WAS it Jeremy Corbyn’s nations and regions of England remark or his ignorance of the separate Scottish legal system that finally tipped the scales and brought about Kezia Dugdale’s resignation (Speculation persists over reasons behind Dugdale’s resignation, The National, August 31).?

It could have been, but Dugdale has more likely been the victim of her own ambitions for the Scottish Labour Party, which unfortunately for her do not feature anywhere in the mindset of the UK party.

Her position as Scottish leader has been seriously undermined because of the party’s differing positions on the Tories and SNP depending on whether at Westminster or Holyrood.

How could she cope with the situation when after Labour MPs voted for £12 billion in savings in social security alongside Tory MPs voting for a £12 billion cut in the welfare budget, Labour MSPs in Holyrood demanded that the SNP Scottish Government make good the cuts imposed as a result of the Westminster decision?

She failed to recognise that Labour’s support for Tory policies, coupled with strident denunciation of the SNP at Westminster, was mainly for the benefit of their English election campaigns.

It was widely reported that following Tony Blair’s election victory Scottish MPs took over the UK Government and indeed two Scottish chancellors of the exchequer were in charge of the economy leading up to the collapse of 2008 and the subsequent age of austerity.

The categorical assurances by Ed Miliband and Jeremy Corbyn that Labour would rather see a Tory government than have an alliance with the SNP were made to reassure their English voters that the feared Scottish contingent of MPs had been routed.

Kezia Dugdale overlooked the fact that Labour would not do a deal with the SNP for entirely different reasons – in Scotland the SNP had abolished student fees and the bedroom tax (these had originated as Labour’s graduate endowment charge and removal of the spare room subsidy), along with prescription and personal care charges, all of which still exist in England even after 13 years of Labour government.

Her attempts to introduce more Scottish policies for her Scottish Labour Party and her well-intentioned support for increasing Holyrood’s devolved powers often ran contrary to national policies being pursued by Labour HQ.

The final straw as far as Labour HQ was concerned was probably the surprise election of the 12 additional Tory MPs in Scotland that may have prevented Labour from becoming the UK Government. She has been blamed in part for this Tory surge because of a speech that was construed, rightly or wrongly, as suggesting that Labour supporters might consider voting Tory in order to oust the SNP from constituencies where Labour had no possibility of winning.

Perhaps it is all much more simple than that, Kezia Dugdale has realised that the Scottish Labour Party and the precious Union of four equal countries exist only in the context of Westminster’s determination to hold on to power by whatever means it can employ.
John Jamieson
South Queensferry

KEZIA Dugdale has fallen victim to Labour in Scotland’s inherent dilemmas and contradictions.

Anti-SNP, SNP baaad, made it enter into covert alliance with the Tories on a Union ticket. That only served to promote the Tories, Labour’s mortal enemy in the UK.

Labour in Scotland and its espousal of the Great Union makes a Westminsterisation of power and authority currently under the trip of the Tories!

The EU referendum in Scotland was for remain, but Corbyn, the anti-Scot, he is one with May. He has awareness of devolution, a man who thinks Scots Law is an aberration foisted on us after Holyrood! Corbyn and Dugdale are opposites and mirror the Scottish-English divide within and outwith Labour and Scotland!

Corbyn will accept the power grab the Tories want to take back to Westminster. In the end it was all too much of a strain for Kezia Dugdale who was probably made to know her place and get back into the box and return to being Westminster lobby fodder for Labour.

The Labour leader makes no concessions to Scotland. He exemplifies all the vices of Westminster Labour. A phrase-maker who preaches socialism as long as it serves Westminster. A man who opposes Trident, but accepts English Labour’s stance on it.

The “branch” is in a thorny dilemma. Either way it hits an impasse it can’t find a way through. It can only become silent. It has unwittingly promoted the Tories through its “yoonery”.

Such naivety will relegate it to onlooker status within its misguided choice of the “yoonion” above all else!
John Edgar

NO surprise there about Dugdale resigning as Labour leader.

If she had concentrated on her actions to fight against the Tories and their cuts, she might have stayed a bit longer as leader. But she was too busy slagging the SNP on independence – she was obsessed and, ultimately, it was her downfall.

Whether Rowley can do any better, who knows?

I am quite sure Corbyn had a say in her resignation. After all she was one of the people who voted him out of office. Let’s hope the First Minister will continue to lead Scotland for many years to come. On the road to independence.
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