SNP's Ian Blackford calls out Boris Johnson for playing with phone in debate

PUBLISHED: 16:57 19 December 2019 | UPDATED: 17:03 19 December 2019

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford criticises Boris Johnson for playing with his phone. Photograph: Parliament TV.

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford criticises Boris Johnson for playing with his phone. Photograph: Parliament TV.

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The SNP have criticised Boris Johnson for "playing with his phone" rather than listening to their response to the debate on the Queen's speech.

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The prime minister could be seen studying his mobile as Ian Blackford reacted to the government's proposals for the coming year.

The SNP Westminster leader chastised Johnson, warning: "Can I say to the prime minister, it is not a good look to see him playing with his phone rather than listening to the demands of the Scottish National Party."

"Well say something more interesting," the PM replied, who hurriedly put his phone back in his pocket.

Blackford responded: "The prime minister says say something more interesting - well prime minister, this is about democracy, this is about the Scottish National Party that stood in the election on a manifesto about Scotland's right to choose.

"And it was about the Conservatives who said no to indyref2, and Mr Speaker what happened? Well the Conservatives lost more than half their members of parliament.

"Prime minister, you got your answer from the people of Scotland."

Drew Hendry, SNP MP for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey, intervened to add: "The prime minister says that looking at his phone is more interesting than hearing what Scotland needs.

"Doesn't that tell you everything about this prime minister and his view of Scotland?"

Blackford replied: "Indeed it does. There isn't really much that can be added to that because the image of the prime minister playing with his phone, not listening to the Scottish National Party says it all.

"The people of Scotland did not vote for this prime minister, Scotland did not vote for this Conservative government, and we certainly did not vote for this con of a Tory plan set out today."

Blackford earlier said there is "nothing" in the Queen's Speech for the people of Scotland.

He said: "This morning Scotland's first minister Nicola Sturgeon has written to the prime minister to demand the transfer of legal powers to the Scottish government to hold a second independence referendum under Section 30 of the Scotland Act."

Blackford said there has been a change in circumstances since the initial independence vote in 2014 "based on the prospect of Scotland leaving the EU against its will".

He added: "And it is for the prime minister to explain to the people of Scotland why he is denying Scotland the right to choose our own future?

"Why did democracy stop in the prime minister's world with the independence referendum in 2014?"

He also outlined the SNP's continued opposition to Brexit.

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