As I write, we stand at the beginning of another tumultuous week in British Politics. Over the weekend, the Prime Minister decided to postpone the meaningful vote on the Withdrawal Agreement (the ‘deal’) for two weeks whilst she and others continue to seek to get the changes necessary to the Agreement to allow it to pass through the House of Commons.
I understand how frustrating this is for you all. Believe me, being by her side for the last two months, no one finds this entire process more frustrating than the Prime Minister herself. But she is determined to act, as she always has done, in the national interest and get this deal, the deal she spent nearly two years working for, across the line; albeit with the necessary changes on the Northern Irish backstop that the House agreed were needed when it voted for the Brady Amendment earlier this month.
As you know, I have always believed that leaving with a deal is the best outcome for Britain and for our friends in the EU. It is supported by all the major industry bodies in Scotland, including CBI Scotland, the Scotch Whisky Association, the National Farmers Union Scotland and the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation. I continue to back it and will vote for it when it comes back to the House in around two weeks time- with the changes that I am confident the Prime Minister will succeed in securing.
Since my appointment as her PPS, I have been privileged to work closely with Theresa May and her closest advisors. It would always have been a privilege to be asked to carry out the role of PPS to the Prime Minister under any leader and at any time. But I am especially lucky to be doing it at this time and for this Prime Minister. For we are genuinely charting a new course for our great country- writing a new chapter in its history; and I can think of no one I would rather have at the helm than Theresa May. Every day I see anew her determination, her resolve and her drive to make sure we leave the EU, keep our Party together and build a country, our whole United Kingdom, that works for everyone- a Britain that is fit for the future.
The comparisons with Jeremy Corbyn, a man who, throughout his life, when forced to choose between Britain and the enemies of Britain, always chose the enemies of Britain, could not be more stark.
Likewise the difference between the record of our Government and the Scottish National Party Executive in Edinburgh speaks for itself. Lowering Taxes, making it easier to do business, reducing unemployment to its lowest level since the early 1970s, continuing to attract record inward investment, delivering a long term plan for our NHS, recruiting more nurses, taking action against the worst criminals online and overseas, investing in our police, building the critical national infrastructure we need, improving telecommunications and connectivity, becoming the global bub for hi-tech development, delivering a record sum to local authorities, becoming the greenest government in history and on track to be the first G7 nation to hit our Paris Climate Change targets and promoting this country overseas - that’s what this Conservative Government is doing for Britain.
What do we see in Scotland? Local GPs surgeries struggling to attract doctors, an NHS in crisis, infrastructure projects delayed, schools failing, a teacher shortage, Scottish students denied places at our world class universities, a First Minister jetting across the world to talk reserved issues while people at home face higher bills- income tax up, council tax up, a tax on parking places, a tax on your coffee cups, a failed minimum unit pricing policy that punishes responsible drinkers whilst having no affect on alcoholism and now even a proposed sugar tax that could see some of our famous companies go under- all while they obsess over another independence referendum. That’s the Scottish Executive under the SNP. Failing Scotland. Failing the Scottish people.
My colleagues here in Westminster and in Holyrood, will continue to fight for the hard working people of Scotland and the whole UK. Fighting any proposed independence referendum, fighting for lower taxes, fighting for fairness and fighting to ensure Jeremy Corbyn is never allowed to take the keys to 10 Downing Street and undo all the good work we have done since David Cameron became Prime Minister in 2010.
In Theresa May you have a Prime Minister dedicated to fighting for this country and it’s people. I’m proud to work with her and I’m very proud to work for you, the people of West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine, whose interests and concerns remain my top priority every day I serve you.
Thank you for your continued support.