The SNP Westminster leader accused Prime Minister Boris Johnson of “yapping and bumbling” in an attempt to bypass scrutiny during Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs). But Ian Blackford’s comments sparked the moaning and hollering of his fellow colleagues, prompting Mr Johnson to immediately hit back at the SNP politician. Replying to claims about Scotland losing trust in the UK Government Mr Johnson insisted Mr Blackford is “completely wrong” in his characterisation of the hard work done to protect the nation.
Mr Johnson urged the SNP politician to better explain to the Scottish people the importance of the Internal Market Bill and the new powers the Scottish devolved administration will obtain thanks to the legislation.
The Prime Minister said: “I’m afraid he’s completely wrong in what he says about the Internal Market Bill and, perhaps, the people of Scotland deserve to hear a clearer account of what it does from him.
“After all, this bill devolves power back to Scotland, gives power back to Scotland, enables Scotland not just to take back control of its spectacular fisheries, but also opens up markets for Scottish agriculture around the world.
“Today it’s a historic day because after 23 years in which every single government failed, this government has managed to lift the ban for British beef in America.”
He added: “And Scottish beef will be going to the United States thanks to the efforts of the British Government and that is a fact, with advantage, he might inform his electorate of.”
Mr Blackford however dismissed Mr Johnson response, insisting he had failed to address the issue of reduced trust among Scottish voters in the Westminster Government.
He said: “I don’t know what that was Mr Speaker but it certainly wasn’t an answer to my question.
“And it’s no wonder that the trust of the Government is at 15 percent and falling after that performance.
He added: “Last night was a defining moment, if this attack on devolution fails to gain the consent of the devolved parliament in Northern Ireland and Scotland, will the Prime Minister withdraw this legislation or will he force it through against our wishes?”
Parliament last night finalised the third reading stage of the Internal Market Bill despite attempts from the SNP to derail the legislation.
According to the Scottish Government, the bill would allow the Westminster Government to have a say on issues currently devolved to the national administration at the end of the transition period.
But the Prime Minister has insisted the legislation will ensure the smooth passage of goods within the UK and provide Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales with additional powers.