Drumlanrig: Jeremy Purvis | Nick Clegg | David Cameron
IT MAY seem extraordinary for those who knew him as a humble MSP, but ex-Borders politician Jeremy Purvis will indeed soon have to be described as “Lord”, after Nick Clegg chose to elevate him to the Peerage.
What on earth did Purvis do to gain such a gong? Mischievous Holyrood sources are suggesting that Clegg’s decision may have been a calculated snub to former Scottish leader of the party, Tavish Scott (right). Both Scott’s predecessors in the job, Jim Wallace and Nicol Stephen were rewarded for their exertions with an ermine suit. Yet it now turns out that Tav has to wait in line behind Jez. MSPs are pointing out that, two years ago, Scott declared that Clegg’s infamous u-turn on tuition fees had dragged the Scottish party “into the political gutter”. Could this in any way have influenced Clegg’s decision?
Cameron says cheese for Tory Yes man
SLAPPED bum time at the Scottish Conservatives after David Cameron was ambushed during a private do with Tory party donors in Scotland last week by Lawrie Clark, a paid-up supporter of the pro-independence cause. Clark, who is also a member of the party, was asked to come along to the bash, and used the opportunity not just to press Dave on the Tory case for independence, but also to get his picture taken (with the help of another Tory activist) with a rather nonplussed PM. With the party’s spinners spitting tacks, deputy leader Jackson Carlaw was left to get the blame for Clark’s appearance.
Stardust memories of a fine politician
DAVID McLetchie’s death last week has triggered many tributes and recollections of his finer parliamentary put-downs. One came in May 2002 after Wendy Alexander had resigned as Enterprise Minister. “Sometimes it seems that there are more drop-outs in the Scottish Executive than there were at Woodstock,” he declared. “‘We are stardust, we are falling’ is a song for Wendy Alexander,” he added, misquoting Joni Mitchell. McLetchie (right) then noted that only eight of Labour’s 55 MSPs had not yet held office. “I have a list of the awful 8 but I say to Mr B, Ms C and Mrs L – I have changed the names to protect the identities of the innocent – that their time will come… they are not too incompetent to get a job in the Scottish Executive – ability is not a barrier to advancement.” Ouch.