Exercise for the constitution?

A PAIR of local MSPs have locked horns on the debate of Scottish independence.

Stewart Maxwell MSP accused the Tories of riding “roughshod over the electorate” and called on Jackson Carlaw MSP to support a move for enhanced financial powers for the Scottish parliaments.

Mr Maxwell told The Extra: “I want the Tory prime minister to leave the Scottish referendum to the people of Scotland, instead of interfering with the decisions of the elected government.

“The people of Scotland last year voted overwhelmingly for the SNP, with a historic majority, and we will honour our commitment to those who voted for us by holding a referendum in the second half of this Parliament”.

Tory man Carlaw fought back against Maxwell’s argument: “I recognise that the 2011 Scottish parliament election result gave the SNP the mandate to hold a referendum, but Stewart Maxwell must not forget Scotland has two governments.

‘The Prime Minster is seeking to end Scotland’s constitutional uncertainty and make sure that any referendum is legal, fair and decisive.

“Stewart Maxwell and the SNP have been campaigning for separation all their lives; yet now they wish to dither over giving the Scottish people their democratic say in a legally binding vote as to whether to end our 300 year old partnership with the rest of the United Kingdom”.

However their Labour rival Mr Macintosh refused to be drawn into the debate and accused Mr Maxwell of having skewed priorities.

He said: “The challenge facing many families in Eastwood is to pay the household bills, for others it is to keep their businesses going or for too many young people, it is to find a job. 

“These are the issues that concern me and the SNP Government should offer some help rather than obsessing about the constitution”.

“All said and in the local context in which he has made his rather contrived and hysterical challenge, Stewart Maxwell has made himself look rather ridiculous”.

n CATHCART MSP James Dornan is readying himself to campaign across his constituency for independence.

He told The Extra: “The debate on independence is one for the people, and I will be having that debate on the doorsteps over the course of this campaign.

“The most important issue for people right now is jobs and the economy, and that is what independence is about. Not about flags and anthems, but about having the powers to create a Scotland that has a fair and stable economy, so that the people of my constituency can benefit from that”.