Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Alex Johnstone

Right, let's get back to business. Crap Holyrood Chat is the name of the blog and crap Holyrood chat is what you're going to get.
Next in the limelight is a Tory, a first for the blog (I think, the multititude of authors makes it difficult to keep track.)

Alex Johnstone came out with this whopper a while back in the parliament and it definitely merits inclusion in the CHC vaults:

Alex Johnstone (North East Scotland) (Con): Aye, right. Robert Brown opened his speech by questioning the order in which the final speeches are being made. I will not do that, because I know the procedures in this Parliament and how the order is decided. Sadly, I cannot say that the Liberal party's lack of understanding of the procedures is the reason why it has behaved in the way that it has today, but I will say more about that.
First, I want to talk about the Labour Party and what it proposes in its motion. It is a disappointment that, once again, the rump of the Scottish Labour Party has come to the Parliament and demonstrated that it neither understands nor can cope with the notion of opposition.

Jackie Baillie: Will the member give way?

Alex Johnstone: The tradition in this Parliament is that if a member mentions someone in their speech, they give them a chance to reply—so I give way to the rump of the Scottish Labour Party.

Jackie Baillie: I advise the member that the Presiding Officers care about the language that is employed in the chamber.

I ask the member, who is evidently confused—along with his colleague Mr Brownlee—if he is not aware that David McLetchie contributed to the Labour motion that is before us? Could he perhaps tell me what rule or standing order has been changed? Does he agree that no motion that is contrary to the standing orders would be accepted by the Presiding Officer? Why are the Tories rejecting the opportunity for debate on the budget priorities? Perhaps the answer lies in the price that the Tories extracted from the SNP for denying the Parliament the right to debate.
The Deputy Presiding Officer: I remind Mr Johnstone to be very careful with his language—I was not happy about your last comment.

Oh dear, oh dear Alex. Where are your manners old boy!?

1 comment:

Bill said...

Frankly his language seems mild compared to some of the nonsense one hears emanating from that Chamber, from all parts of the hemisphere. If one of those at whom his [perfectly accurate] comment was directed had not raised the issue, I doubt very much whether the Presiding Officer would have bothered with it, but once the matter was raised he couldn't ignore it. Which rather makes Johnstone's point in raising the criticism he did of Labour's attitude toward 'opposition'.

However, his error (Johnstone's) was in not knowing that one of his own Parliamenary colleagues was involved in drafting the motion, assuming for the purposes of this discussion that what Ms Baillie asserted is true, so his whole question (assuming it wasn't actually a subtle 'dig' at McLetchie) was superfluous; that seems to me to be the only reason to include his contribution in your blog.

On the other hand, what do I know ...