Sturgeon fan rushes to defend FM over Tory attack Made a mistake

Nicola Sturgeon ‘made a mistake’ says Maciver

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A Scottish Conservative commentator has suggested Nicola Sturgeon “made a mistake” when the SNP leader said she “detests” the Tories during a broadcast interview. Andy Maciver waded into a BBC Scotland’s Debate Night discussion around the Scottish First Minister’s remarks which triggered a chorus of condemnation from Scottish Conservatives. 

Mr Maciver told BBC Debate Night: “I know Nicola Sturgeon, I like Nicola Sturgeon. She is a nice and genuine person.

“I think she made a mistake, there were two parts to the statement there was the part about the Tories and there was the part about the policies.

“And I think if she had her time again she would say the second part and I don’t think she would say the first part.

“I think it was a mistake and I don’t think she should have said it.”


“Words really matter,” he continued.

“Because people take their lead from words, and we have heard lots of opposition to policy expressed pretty vehemently in the room tonight, and we live in a country where you can do that and that’s all fine.

“But people take their lead from leaders and I do think it is important what leaders say is appropriate, and defensible and reasonable.”

It comes after the Scottish First Minister was asked during an interview if she would prefer a Conservative or Labour government.

Ms Sturgeon replied: “If the question to me is would I prefer a Labour Government over a Tory government? I detest the Tories and everything they stand for, so It’s not difficult to answer that question.”

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The remarks sparked anger from Scottish Conservative MSPs and senior party grandees. 

Former party leader Ruth Davidson and ex-Glasgow MSP tweeted about the remark saying: “With Nicola Sturgeon’s ‘detest the Tories’ line earlier, there is clearly a rhetoric raising strategy this SNP conference in order to other and traduce a quarter of the Scottish voting population.”

In the House of Commons on Wednesday, the Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross claimed the First Minister had insulted “hundreds and thousands of Scottish Conservative voters.” 

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack agreed with him, and said Mr Ross was “absolutely right to call it out”.

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Mr Ross said: “Does the Secretary of State agree with me that language is also really important and when the First Minster said that she detests the Tories – and the cheers coming from the SNP – she is insulting hundreds and thousands of Scottish Conservative voters when she should be representing the whole of Scotland as First Minister?”

Mr Jack replied: “Of course I agree with him.

“Language is terribly important in politics, we saw the desperate death of David Amess and others before him, and you cannot incite people using words like detest, which as you’ll see in the dictionary – the other word is hate – and the irony is the Scottish Government bring forward a hate Bill and yet we have language like detest, you’re absolutely right to call it out.”

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