FMQs: Anger over claim John Swinney and Donald Trump are "two peas in a pod"

John Swinney was compared with Donald Trump
John Swinney was compared with Donald Trump
Share this article
Have your say

A Holyrood row has erupted after John Swinney was compared with US President Donald Trump over the introduction of controversial Primary 1 exams in Scotland.

Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said the pair were like "two peas in a pod" as tempers flared during First Minister Questions today.

Mr Swinney, deputising for Nicola Sturgeon who was at the D-day celebrations, had claimed this week that the national tests for five-year-old had been introduced without problems despite widespread concerns among parents and teaching organisations.

READ MORE: Former SNP MP Natalie McGarry jailed

Rennie told MSPs today: "He (Swinney) claimed that the tests had been implemented without any difficulty whatsoever.

"On the very same day in London, Donald Trump claimed he only saw cheering crowds - two peas in a pod both in denial."

The claims prompted an angry reaction from the SNP benches and a withering response from the Deputy First Minister.

"I think that question is symbolic of Willie Rennie's leadership. I don't think it serves decent discourse in this Parliament for Willie Rennie to characterise his questions like that.

"He can say what he likes to me - it's water off a duck's back to me. But I don't think it helps his credibility one iota."

The Education Secretary added that the absence of difficulties he was citing was down to the smooth administration of the tests and IT systems after their introduction, not the arguments about their merits.