Take back control from Boris Johnson

Many people are looking at this week’s UK election result with a deep sense of anxiety about what Boris Johnson’s hard right government will do now that it has a majority. We share that feeling, but we are determined that Scotland must not shrink from the challenge of opposing the Conservative Government and its values. We must work harder than ever to protect the people who will be vulnerable in the face of what’s coming, and to win wider and deeper support for a positive vision of what Scotland can achieve if we take our future into our own hands.

We all know what to expect from England’s version of Donald Trump. He will help his friends get richer at the expense of the sick, the disabled, the exploited. He will ramp up the hostile environment toward migrants. He will launch an assault on human rights, and he will suppress democracy and manipulate the constitution to stay in power.

There are serious threats to Scottish self-government too. The case for putting independence back to the public is strong, and will have our support. But before that the Tories will undoubtedly continue to undermine devolution by legislating in devolved areas without Holyrood’s consent; they will attack our legal system; they will delay their budget without any thought to the disruption to Scottish public services; they will seek a deal with Trump’s extremist regime which will slash social and environmental standards – all of which will cut across huge swathes of devolved powers.

Above all they will waste the precious few years we have to make transformational changes to our society and our economy that are needed to prevent runaway climate breakdown. A year from now the eyes of the world will be on us as the global climate conference gathers in Glasgow, but Boris Johnson will be continuing his obsession with severing our ties from our European family, and doubling-down on the hard right economic model which has brought us to the brink of environmental crisis.

The Scottish Government must not retreat to talking only about what can’t be done, and putting everything off till independence. Only a bold, creative approach at Holyrood will build the social support people will need in the months and years ahead, and inspire people to believe what we can achieve if we take the independence path.

If there’s a case to “take back control” from anyone, it must be taken back from Boris Johnson and his dangerous government. But we will only build the case for that by focusing on what we can and must do right now, to protect people in Scotland from the worst that the Tories are about to throw at us.