If I were Ruth Davidson, I would be very disenchanted with my English Tory counterparts.
She has been a loyal and committed member of the Conservative and Unionist Party of the United Kingdom, doing much to ensure a ‘No’ result in the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum, and fighting a hard and successful campaign in the 2017 General Election, increasing the number of Scottish Tories in Westminster from 1 to 13. Had she not done so, the Conservatives would have been unable to form a government.
The Scottish Conservative MPs have loyally supported the Government, and what is their thanks? It comes to 79 per cent of Conservative Party members in England and Wales turning round and saying that they would sooner opt for a hard Brexit than retain the Union.
The Conservative Party has approximately 124,000 members in the UK. Seventy-nine per cent accounts for 98,000. It is this small number, with Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson at the helm, who are dictating the terms of Brexit. They obviously don’t care about Scotland, or Northern Ireland, and seem totally to disregard the Scottish Tory MPs, and the Irish DUP, who have been propping up the Government, ensuring its survival. Say good-bye to them, and Jeremy Corbyn may well be in No.10.
If as a result of leaving the EU on the hard terms sought by the right of the Tory party, the UK breaks up, would they really see that as a price worth paying? Standing back and allowing Ireland to become united would be a complete betrayal of all those who were killed and maimed in the troubles over the decades. Standing back and allowing the SNP to hold, and very possible win, a second independence referendum because of Brexit, would be a betrayal of the loyal Scots who have supported the United Kingdom for generations.
More than once after the 2016 referendum I heard the phrase: ‘We’ve got our England back!’ If, as a result of the Brexit process, the United Kingdom were to break up, ‘our England’ would be little more than a footnote in the European consciousness. Northern Ireland, being reunited with the south, would remain in the EU, and an independent Scotland would apply to join and doubtless be welcomed with open arms, leaving ‘our England’ isolated and alone, irrelevant in Europe and the wider world. The United Kingdom would lose out, thanks to the 98,000 Conservative members willing to sacrifice the union to ‘get their England back.’
Ruth Davidson has other things on her mind, with impending motherhood, but she must feel betrayed by her party who have no interest in Scotland, or Northern Ireland, so long as they get their hard Brexit. A high price to pay.