Trimble pronounces against nationalism in Scotland

Glad to see milord Trimble pronouncing confidently on how to handle devolution – in Scotland, and against Alex Salmond

Alex is the Artful Dodger of politics and he will have a charmed existence for some time, but he can’t actually deliver a solution to the real problems. Lord Trimble said he was confident the Tories would win the next UK election – and make gains in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

On suggestions that only English MPs should vote on English matters, he said: “There is only one sovereign parliament in the UK, end of story. Power devolved is power retained. If you start trying to restructure the sovereign parliament because of devolution you are actually doing huge damage.”

See here the latest Devolution Monitoring Report for Scotland

compiled for the Constitution Unit last month. Since the Glenrothes by election won by Labour it shows SNP and Labour fighting it out in time to see-sawing opinion over handling the recession. Alex Samond was still streets ahead as the most convincing Scottish leader, 10 points up on Gordon Brown according to an October YouGov poll.

In November – does the current financial crisis make you more or less likely to support independence
for Scotland?
More likely 24
Less likely 42
Unsure 34

.. and lot’s more for either party and cause to spin in its favour. The report gives a valuable account of the full course of Scottish devolution over the year, not just the opinion polls.

Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London