Daily Political Newspaper Summary: 18 May 2015
All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is highlighted and underlined.
In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV news and Sky News.
Labour Party: Unite Union Chief Len McCluskey accused the Scottish Labour party of losing touch with its working-class roots, and has warned that it could start providing support to the SNP, whereas Jim Murphy said the Unite chief was killing Labour.
Kezia Dugdale MSP reportedly has the backing of the Unite Union to replace Jim Murphy after Neil Findlay has ruled himself out of the running to replace Jim Murphy. In the contest for the UK Labour leadership, Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt said he was the “change candidate”. (The Scotsman page 1, The Sun page 2, The Sunday Times page 1, The Daily Express page 1, The Daily Record page 6, The Daily Record page 7, The National, The Times page 6, The Guardian page 9, The Courier page 13, The Press and Journal page 11, Daily Mail page 8, Daily Telegraph page 1)
Pat Kane comments in the Scotsman on the need for Labour to find its own version of Scotland’s “civic nationalism” south of the border if it is to rebuild.
Andrew Nicoll comments in the Sun on the struggles of the Scottish Labour Party.
Stephen Low comments in the Daily Record on the “disaster” of Jim Murphy’s leadership.
Patrick Wintour comments in the Guardian on the lack of leadership and identity that Labour is currently facing.
Alex Salmond comments in the Courier on Jim Murphy’s resignation.
Scottish Labour independence: The support for an independent Scottish Labour Party is growing after Andy Burnham, the frontrunner to succeed Ed Miliband as party leader, said there was a “case” for such a move. (The Herald page 1,)
Fox Hunting Ban: The Scottish Nationalists in Westminster have been called on by Scottish Labour to vote against scrapping the ban on fox hunting in England, which raises the issue of so-called “solely English matters”. (The Herald page 7, The Scotsman page 15, the Daily Record page 7, The Courier page 14)
Scottish Green Party: Patrick Harvie, the Scottish Greens leader, will pledge to make a future SNP government “greener and bolder” in a copycat campaign, saying they will model their strategy on the SNP’s successful election campaign. (The Herald page 6)
MPs working background: An analysis led by the Herald showed that most of the new Scottish MPs have done middle-class or white-collar jobs, with the most frequent activity being business or finance. (The Herald page 6)
Scottish Independence: 52 per cent of people in Scotland and nearly three-fifths (59 percent) of people in England think the UK will split by 2025 according to a poll by British Future. (The Herald page 6, The Scotsman page 2, The Sunday Times page 4, The Daily Record page 7, The National, The Courier page 14)
Human Rights Act: Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland could block David Cameron’s bid to scrap the Human Rights Act according to Dominic Grieve, the former Conservative Attorney General. (The Herald page 7, The Times page 6, The Courier page 14, The Press and Journal page 13)
Europe Referendum: Andy Burnham has insisted he is the “change candidate” as he made a bold bid to outflank David Cameron on Europe, demanding a referendum should be held next year. (The Scotsman page 5, The Daily Express page 2)
Same-sex Marriage: Ministers are set to clash over whether the Kirk’s decision to permit the appointment of gay ministers in civil partnerships should be extended to those in same-sex marriage. (The Scotsman page 8, The Press and Journal page 14, Daily telegraph page 2)
Scottish referendum: Nicola Sturgeon has warned David Cameron he would be personally responsible for a second independence referendum if he blocks her demands for an extra swathe of powers being transferred to Scotland. (The Daily Telegraph page 5)
Gillian Bowditch comments in the Sunday Times on how a referendum is unlikely despite Nicola Sturgeon’s words.
Gillian Bowditch and Jason Allarddyce comment in the Sunday Times on the Prime Minister and First Minister’s battle over the future of the union.
Federalism: David Torrance comments in the Herald on British federalism and its complexity.
David Cameron: Brian Monteith comments in the Scotsman on how the Prime Minister could leave a more positive mark before leaving office in a few years.
Realpolitik: Alastair Ross comments in the Scotsman that it is in the SNP’s interests to respect Westminster and use its new MPs in a positive way.
Tax Policy: The planned devolution of tax powers in Britain will push the country into “uncharted territory” according to an international fiscal expert, with Westminster prepared to loosen its grip on tax policy, as it comes to make more concessions in the wake of the Scottish nationalists’ gains. (The Financial Times page 4)
NHS: Prime Minister David Cameron is pledging today to give England a “truly seven-day a week NHS”, which is set to give Scotland’s own healthcare a multi-million pound shot in the arm. Investment in the English NHS will reportedly increase by £8 billion a year by the end of the Parliament. (The Herald page 7, The Financial Time page 3, The Guardianpage 4, The Daily Telegraph page 1)