Newsnet Main Articles

lamont labour  By Bob Duncan 

Johann Lamont is "running scared" and must live up to her own demands for an open debate on universal services and benefits, say the SNP, after her party torpedoed a member's debate on the subject which was due to take place today.

As revealed by the Sunday Herald at the weekend, the debate was cancelled at short notice after Labour complained that the motion did not have sufficient cross-party support. The Labour party could have resolved this by signing the motion but chose instead to let it be cancelled through their inaction.

The SNP's Clare Adamson MSP has today written to the Scottish Leader Johann Lamont, as well as Willie Rennie and Ruth Davidson, calling on all three party leaders to let their members sign her motion, which welcomes the publication of the report by the Jimmy Reid Foundation on the Case for Universalism in Scotland.

As reported in Newsnet Scotland on Monday, the Foundation's Director Robin McAlpine used the Foundation's website to urge Labour to "openly debate" the issue and warned against taking part in "only debates you think you will win", calling such an approach "unhealthy".

Mr McAlpine added: "It is how political parties become convinced in policies that have not been robustly tested through argument. It prevents you from developing your own thinking sufficiently. It encourages you to hide behind pre-prepared soundbites. It is comfortable in the short term but weakens you in the long term."

Ms Adamson is attempting to have the debate rescheduled at the first opportunity, but she needs the support of at least one Labour, Tory or Lib Dem MSP in order for the motion to be accepted.

Johann Lamont has repeatedly called for an 'honest debate' on the provision of universal services, while the Sunday Herald this week quoted a Labour spokesperson as saying they "look forward to debating Scotland's spending priorities with the Government at every opportunity". The SNP say this means there should be no issue with Labour MSPs signing this motion.

Ms Adamson said: "I was absolutely exasperated to hear that my debate had been cancelled at short notice, after a Labour Party complaint led to it being pulled.

"Johann Lamont has repeatedly called for an 'honest debate' on the affordability of universal services – last week she even accused the First Minister attempting to stifle a debate on spending priorities. Yet at that very moment, Labour were working behind the scenes to have a debate on the subject cancelled.

"All parties have an interest in debating this topic, but it's in Johann Lamont interests in particular not to run scared from discussing her key flagship policy.

"All she has done so far with her Cuts Commission is cause alarm to tens of thousands of Scots who rely on these services which she wishes to cut – now she has the chance to specifically set out what cuts she wants to make, and why.

"I have absolutely no problem in standing up for the achievements of Devolution – and for a socially progressive Scotland - but if Ms Lamont wishes to roll these achievements back and inflict Tory cuts, then she must be prepared to defend this publicly.

"The question for Johann Lamont must surely be - will she now allow this debate to go ahead, or is she afraid of what she is going to hear?"


# Keef 2013-01-17 07:25
"running scared"?

I shudder at the thought of seeing her running.

This so called leader would be flat out running a bath never mind the ever dwindling Scottish labour MSP's.

Where is her leadership in condeming the spiteful and disgraceful comments made against Scotland and the Scots by Sarwar and Davidson?
# bodun 2013-01-17 16:46
Lamont's hypocrisy gets a mention here too.

Scottish Independence: Independent Scotlandshire's deficit would be too small – Michael Moore
# Big Eye 2013-01-17 07:37
Perhaps those who seek the introduction of fees into Scottish education would tell us about the fact that student debt in the USA is now higher than the entire credit card debt of the USA.

Think about that, while credit card debt is spread across a vast range of people in all social classes, the student debt is concentrated on only those who opted for University or college. It is already causing major social change as more and more young people are forced to remain living with their parents and can't look at marriage and independent living.

Thank the SNP that the same is not happening here.
# Macart 2013-01-17 09:04
Pretty much most of the house attacked the Scottish Government, the Scottish electorate and levelled personal assaults on the democratically elected First Minister of Scotland. The silence from Lamont on both this and those actions during the debate of Westminster MPs speaks volumes.

This is why she must never, ever be allowed anywhere near the post of First Minister. She has steadfastly refused to condemn some of the most appalling attacks by the Westminster government and members of her own party against the democratically elected majority Scottish Government. This person, this party will not stand up for the Scottish electorate. Mind you she has been known tell the odd whopper (imaginary rape case) and behave like a child herself when in chamber, so perhaps it is a bit too close to home there.
# Independista 2013-01-17 10:24
Maybe she was in Outer Mongolia and Ed forgot to tell her that'universality is the bedrock of our society'. Here is the clip Johann, in case you missed it.
# gus1940 2013-01-17 10:32
What a rambling incoherent rant from Jumping Flash Jack on last night's Scotland Tonight.

One could easily have formed the impression that he had been overindulging in The House Of Lords' Catering Facilities.
# Jim Johnston 2013-01-17 16:10
Jack's just never been the same since he got pelters for his jaunty, gallas wee man NY photo shoot promoting Scotland in his charcoal kilt and Corries shirt.
Well I ask you, how can anyone not take his every word as gospel ??.
It's not wee Jacks fault he can't shine the same in the company of Davidson, Sarwar, Wallace, Forsyth, Foulkes, Darling, Brown, etc., etc., etc., when he's dhan sauff among professional galoots and imbeciles.
# Arraniki 2013-01-17 11:19
Never a charismatic or dynamic figure, he was often referred to as 'Jacklustre' when FM.

Mostly remembered for calling his constituency a "pigsty" before deserting it for the Lords.
# mealer 2013-01-17 12:31
Ms Lamont seems to be avoiding any contribution to the debate on Trident as well.
# Big Eye 2013-01-17 13:20
First Minister's question was a hoot yet again as AS demolished Ms Lamont yet again.

Particularly enjoyed the part where Labour had described the results of the NHS investigation as a disgrace and a disaster until the author explained that it covered the period when they were in charge. At this point they promised to come back with a revised quote. She never heard from them again!

Speak volumes about Labour and no you will not see it on the news this evening.
# Dundonian West 2013-01-17 13:28
"Speak volumes about Labour and no you will not see it on the news this evening."
Exactly.I watch BBC London TV local news via cable,and they are really impartial journalists---where everything is covered and scrutinised----giving Boris and Ken balanced air time.
No politicaal agenda from the journalists.
A far superior outfit at BBC London local TV news.
# bleach 2013-01-17 13:23
'Jacklustre' (so very apt, Arraniki) was so flustered all the way through that Scotland Tonight interview, I honestly expected the lady interviewing him to burst out laughing at him.

I'll never understand how people can or could support, or could have ever voted for the likes of him.
# Jim Johnston 2013-01-17 14:08
Just watched FMQ's to specifically compare Holyrood vs Commons vs Lords standard over the past three days.
No contest is there !!!.

Yesterday I heard "Lord" Forsyth describe the previous days Commons fiasco as a "brilliant debate" and followed up the Commons creeps accusation that Holyrood is an undemocratic dictatorship ???.
Er,,,,,,, unless I missed something, every MSP was elected via a more democratic PR system than any Westminster MP, or an absolutely UNELECTED Hof"Lords".

Commons proceedings are deplorable as a norm, the HofL is nothing short of atrocious.

Independence is the only way out of this cesspit Union for Scotland, and "do you know what" MR Darling, and Forsyth, I have English friends praying for a Yes vote so that they too can be rid of your Westminster cesspit septic tank asap thereafter.
# loveme2times 2013-01-17 15:02
O/T but when reading Nicola's blog I noticed that the responses to the consultation had been released (think I was on holiday at the time), I had a look for my own response (of course) and then I noticed the response from Labour, short and unsweet to say the least.

My reply -

Labour reply -
# admiral 2013-01-17 15:24
I read Labour's answers to Questions 1-3 only. The spelling mistakes and poor grammar put me off and I gave up. Turgid doesn't cover it.

Mind you, it does speak volumes about the care and attention they (pretend to) lavish on Scottish matters.
# admiral 2013-01-18 07:45
Poor wee Joanna is waiting for the high-heid-yins of London Labour to send her a crib sheet so she knows what she thinks about universal benefits. Since London Labour have other priorities that all come before Scotland, she'll have to stall and stall and stall until they remember she exists...

You must be logged-in in order to post a comment.


Donate to Newsnet Scotland


Latest Comments