Davidson puts Sturgeon on notice in first outing as opposition leader

Are you one of those people who still can’t quite get your head around the Holyrood election result? There’s no shame in it; many others are in the same position. The Conservatives are now the second party of Scotland. Labour lags behind in third place. How did this happen? The Tories were “toxic” north of…

Ruth Davidson and the strange rebirth of Tory Scotland

Sometime in the early hours of Friday morning, a thought darted suddenly into my caffeinated semi-consciousness: ‘What about the textbooks?’ They would all have to be pulped. Paul Cairney no more. Neil McGarvey no more. Michael Keating and Peter Lynch no more. I might stick my half shelf of James Mitchells on eBay as collector…

Sturgeon has no majority but she has a mandate to change Scotland

‘Humility.’ The word leapt out from Nicola Sturgeon’s speech on the steps outside Bute House. She had just led her party to victory in the Scottish Parliament elections. “Historic” is an overused word but last night’s results truly were landmark. The Scottish National Party, targeted for elimination by Labour with the devolution settlement, humiliated their…

Tommy Sheridan hopes Yes voters will return him to Holyrood

Left-wing campaigner Tommy Sheridan hopes Thursday will mark his return to the Scottish Parliament. He is running on a robustly pro-independence ticket, pledging a re-run of the referendum in 2018 and urging Yes voters to beware caution and complacency. When we sit down to speak about his chances on Thursday, I ask him if pushing…

Tommy Sheridan on Rupert Murdoch, sun beds and overthrowing capitalism

I interviewed Tommy Sheridan, leader of Solidarity, on his campaign to return to Holyrood. The radical figure is placing independence front and centre in his efforts and he spoke to me about the importance of indyref 2 in an interview which will appear in full later this morning. In the meantime, I present you his…

Mr Nice Guy of the Scottish Left on the Rise again

As militant Trotskyists committed to the overthrow of capitalism go, Colin Fox is a lovely bloke. The 56-year-old is a mainstay of the Left in Scotland but, unlike too many of his comrades, he is gifted with a sense of humour. I have yet to encounter anyone in my profession who has a bad word…

Liberalism in a cold climate as nationalism surges

If I told you one party leader in particular was having a gas of a campaign, you’d probably assume I was talking about Nicola Sturgeon. Hurling around on zip wires, diving down soft play slides, challenging journalists to go-karting contests — only someone comfortably in the lead and without a care in the world could…

The woman on a mission to stop Scotland becoming a ‘one-party state’

Ruth Davidson is applying for a job that doesn’t exist. She wants to be leader of the opposition but there’s no such thing in Scotland. Not because we have reached peak one party statehood and all dissent has been outlawed — that’s pencilled in for 2017 — but because when the devolved legislature was being…

Who is Ruth Davidson’s secret crush? (Hint: It’s not Murdo Fraser.)

My latest party leader interview is with Ruth Davidson, head of the Scottish Conservatives. She talked to me about her campaign to offer strong opposition to the Nationalists at Holyrood. That interview will be published in full later today. First up, her answers to my quick-fire round. Stephen Daisley (SD): Hillary or Bernie? Ruth Davidson…

Colin Fox on Homer Simpson, strikes and the Marxist dialectic of pugs

Colin Fox was the sixth party leader to sit down with me for a conversation about the election. Technically, Fox is still the leader of the Scottish Socialist Party and the Lothians list candidate for Rise, a new left-unity coalition born out of the radical elements of the Yes campaign. However, he has become the…

Willie Rennie on drugs. Wait, not *on* drugs. At least I don’t think so…

Next up in my series of party leader interviews is Willie Rennie. Rennie is leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, God love him. Actually, he’s had a belter of a campaign, hurling around on zip wires and inadvertently appearing in porcine pornography. I sat down with him to talk about liberalism, illiberalism and whether Scotland…