Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt? Scotland must have an alternative

The choice of the next UK Prime Minister – Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt – is in the hands of 124,000 members of the Conservative party, a mere 0.2% of the UK’s population.

63% of Tory members have said they would be willing to see Scotland become independent in order to deliver Brexit, while 61% believe that inflicting “significant damage” on the economy is a worthy price of pursuing a hardline Brexit.

Read more: ‘Brexit is more important than the UK’ – meet the Tory members choosing the next Prime Minister

The people of Scotland deserve better

Rather than looking to find a way to end the Brexit impasse, both Tory candidates are intent on parroting the lines of Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party, as they embrace a no-deal and outdo each other on who can deliver the most damaging and destructive version of Brexit.

With Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt lining up to tell the people of Scotland what they can and cannot do, the SNP is clear that Scotland’s future will be decided only by the people of Scotland.

The people of Scotland deserve the choice of a better future than the Brexit shambles offered by Westminster and the Tory leadership horror show. Support for Scotland taking its place as an independent European nation is on the rise and is only set to increase further – regardless of who the new Tory PM is.

Every candidate backed by Ruth Davidson has dropped out

Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson initially backed Sajid Javid, but when he was eliminated from the race she decided to back Michael Gove – but he was also eliminated on the same day.

Ruth Davidson was once a high profile critic of front-runner Boris Johnson, but now that he looks set to become the next Prime Minister, she has changed her tune, saying she would campaign for him in a General Election.

The Scottish Tories had previously briefed that they were running a parliamentary operation to prevent Boris Johnson from becoming Tory leader.

Now, more and more Scottish Tory MPs are declaring support for Boris Johnson.

This is an enormous embarrassment for Ruth Davidson, who made it her personal mission to block a Johnson coronation – but couldn’t even convince her own MPs to back her and is now getting ready to welcome him as her boss.

With Boris Johnson likely to be Prime Minister in a matter of weeks, more and more people are seeing independence as the only way to secure Scotland’s interests.

Read more: 5 reasons why Scotland must have a choice about its future

Voters have given the SNP a mandate for an independence referendum

The mandate for a referendum on Scotland’s future has been reinforced through consecutive elections – most recently with the SNP winning its best ever result in Europe. But it’s not just the SNP – a majority in the Scottish Parliament has also agreed to deliver a referendum on Scottish independence.

At the European Elections, the Tories stood on an explicit platform to stop a second independence referendum – their message was totally rejected by Scottish voters, giving the Tories their worst ever result, with just 11% of the vote.

Read more: The Tories want to block Scottish democracy – but where’s their mandate?