Stephen Daisley

Stephen Daisley

Stephen Daisley is a Spectator regular and a columnist for the Scottish Daily Mail

Why Kate Forbes is still the SNP’s best hope

They have thrown everything at Kate Forbes. She has been subjected to a secular inquisition marked by triviality and partiality. Journalism is a trade neither teeming with religious believers nor one well-equipped for Biblical exegesis, and it shows.  ‘Gotcha’ interrogation has focused on scriptural provisions offensive to progressive attitudes pervasive among journalists (e.g. on homosexuality

Don’t rush for tickets on Nicola Sturgeon’s farewell tour

Nicola Sturgeon’s valedictory address to the RSA was her ‘And now we turn to the liars…’ speech. The outgoing SNP leader’s remarks were nominally about inequality and climate change but she was really there to talk about the distorting impact of social media on democratic politics. Given her departure was possibly hastened by the pushback

The whole SNP project is now in danger

And so the Nicola Sturgeon years end with neither a bang or a whimper but with one pitiful desk-clearing after another. Peter Murrell, Sturgeon’s husband and the chief executive of the SNP, has announced his resignation. It comes after Murray Foote, the party’s chief spin doctor, walked on Friday. He had been rubbishing media reports

Jeremy Hunt’s war on Scotch whisky is bad politics

The Chancellor’s decision to slap a ten per cent duty hike on Scotch whisky is bad economics. Exports broke the £6 billion mark last year and the industry employs 11,000 people in Scotland while supporting 42,000 jobs across the UK. But whisky is a luxury item in a competitive global market where increases in retail price impact

Stephen Daisley

Kate Forbes is a terrifying prospect for Unionists

If you believe in the United Kingdom, it’s hard not to revel in the bitter infighting occasioned by the contest to replace Nicola Sturgeon. Senior SNP ministers are monstering one another on TV, trashing their government’s record and talking about sacking their rivals if they win. After 16 years of iron discipline, which helped them

Gary Lineker was always going to win against the BBC

The BBC’s decision to back down and allow Gary Lineker to return to presenting is a welcome conclusion to a weekend of extreme silliness. In withdrawing the Match of the Day presenter from the airwaves over a crass and stupid tweet in which Lineker compared the government’s rhetoric on illegal migration to that of 1930s

The BBC shouldn’t have taken Gary Lineker off air

The BBC’s decision to take Gary Lineker off the air is the sort of self-harming stupidity at which the Corporation excels. The Match of the Day presenter tweeted that the Illegal Migration Bill was ‘an immeasurably cruel policy directed at the most vulnerable people’ and done ‘in language that is not dissimilar to that used by Germany in the

Stephen Daisley

Kate Forbes is playing a risky game

Kate Forbes has made her case. She handily won last night’s STV debate between contenders for Nicola Sturgeon’s job. She spoke past the contest, which will be decided by SNP members, to the country at large, that latter constituency having been forgotten in the process to chose the next first minister. She brought the conversation

Qurangate has exposed the weakness of ‘liberals’

There’s a sudden vacancy in the constituency of Wakefield. The incumbent Labour MP hasn’t resigned or died. He just happens to be Simon Lightwood, a good example of nominative determinism. Lightwood’s weaselly intervention in Qurangate carries all the moral force of a sliver of driftwood carried along by the tide. In place of an MP,

Stephen Daisley

Humza Yousaf emerges on top in first SNP hustings

The first SNP leadership hustings was neatly summed up by the first question asked: ‘What will the candidates do to counter the misinformation, lies and antipathy aimed at our party on a daily basis by journalists based in Scotland?’ There was no mistaking that this was an SNP event. No political party likes the news

Scotland’s bottle return scheme shows devolution is broken

Alister Jack may be about to take another stand against reckless policy-making at Holyrood. According to reports, the Scottish Secretary may deny the Scottish government’s deposit return scheme (DRS) a trading exemption under the UK Internal Market Act (UKIMA). The DRS will see 20p added to every single-use packaged drink sold in Scotland, with consumers able

Netanyahu is stoking a fire

Huwara is a Palestinian town in the heart of the Shomron, the mountainous northern portion of the territory Israel refers to as Judea and Samaria and the world knows as the West Bank. Huwara is smouldering today after a night of rioting and fire-setting by Israeli residents. On Sunday, two Israelis, brothers Hallel and Yagel

Labour does not deserve Luciana Berger’s forgiveness

Luciana Berger’s return to the Labour party is not only a restoration but a supreme act of forgiveness. The former MP was hounded out of the party in 2019 because she was Jewish at a point where the whole rotten institution had become infested with antisemites. Berger fought to hold on to her party, not

It’s not game over yet for Kate Forbes

Kate Forbes’ campaign to succeed Nicola Sturgeon has been largely written off by political rivals and the media. Her Christian faith is said to make her unsuitable to lead a progressive party like the SNP and to be the First Minister of a modern Scotland. Not least her admission that, while she doesn’t seek to

Stephen Daisley

Can gender rebel Ash Regan win the SNP leadership race?

Ash Regan is the latest MSP to launch a bid for the SNP leadership. The former Holyrood minister, who quit Nicola Sturgeon’s government over gender recognition reforms, addressed party members and journalists at the Hilton in North Queensferry this morning. Her pitch was red meat to the rank and file, abandoning referendums as the mechanism

The real reason to be scared of Kate Forbes

Kate Forbes’s religious views remain the only thing anyone wants to talk about in the contest to replace Nicola Sturgeon. I expected as much. Forbes, a member of the Free Church of Scotland, has come under fire for saying that she wouldn’t have voted for same-sex marriage and that she believes children should be born within wedlock.