Scottish Green MSP Patrick Harvie has been rebuked by Holyrood’s Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh for calling two Conservative MPs “expensively educated idiots”.
The decision to publicy chasten the Scottish Green co-convenor came during a debate on the Scottish Parliament’s Continuity Bill. MSPs were about to vote on whether to allow the Bill to be granted emergency status.
Mr Harvie had sought an intervention from Scottish Conservative MSP Donald Cameron. His request accepted, the Green MSP began: “Can I assure the member the only people having fun in this situation are expensively educated idiots like Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson.”
The Scottish Green MSP was immedietaly rebuked by the Presiding Officer, who then refused to allow the MSP to continue when, following the rebuke, Harvie retorted – to howls of laughter – that both MPs would receive “the respect they deserve”.
Presiding Officer Macintosh, who replaced outgoing Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick in 2016, hit the headlines on Tuesday after controversially ruling the Scottish Government’s Continuity Bill was outwith the competence of the Scottish Parliament.
The ruling was at odds with that of Scotland’s top law officer, the Lord Advocate, who ruled it was indeed within Holyrood’s competence. The opinion of the Presiding Officer was also at odds with that of his Welsh counterpart who ruled a similar Bill proposed by the Welsh Government was competent.
There has been criticism of Macintosh’s Continuity Bill ruling, with some people highlighting his pro-union leanings and his previous position as a Scottish Labour MSP. Macintosh is also a signatory to a charter published by the pro-Union group Scotland in Union. The charter calls on all MSPs to move on from the 2014 independence referendum and work together with the rest of the UK.
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