The National:

FIRST of all, we'd like to extend our congratulations to Richard Leonard for asking about an issue that isn't reserved at First Minister's Questions. It's rare but always welcome.

This is progress ... but, unfortunately for Scottish Labour, it was only limited progress – as he soon had the SNP mocking him with applause.

Leonard opened up with a question about proposals to introduce a tourism tax in Edinburgh – saying it would help support local services.

READ MORE: Row over Edinburgh's £2 per room, per night tourist tax

He asked: "The First Minister talks of protecting Scotland's tourism industry. But why won't she act to protect Scotland's local services – those very services that our tourism industry relies on?"

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon explained: "I don't think it's any surprise that council leaders like [Edinburgh's] Adam McVey and others see the revenue raising potential of a tourist tax, but equally it's no surprise that there are voices of concern within the tourist sector itself, within the hospitality sector, within the catering sector.

"A responsible government should responsibly consider this and listen to all of the arguments before we come to a decision. And that's what we will do in the run-up to our draft budget, and perhaps beyond our draft budget, and make sure that our decision making is properly informed by evidence.

"I'm not sure what, in that, Richard Leonard could find to disagree with."

Thankfully for Richard Leonard, he didn't feel the need to listen to what had just been said.

Instead, he repeated the question of why the First Minister wasn't backing the tourism tax.

He continued: "Today is World Tourism Day. Tourism in Scotland is now worth £11.2bn. It increased by 17%."

And that glowing endorsement of Scotland's tourism industry prompted a round of applause from the SNP MSPs.

Leonard concluded: “Does the First Minister seriously believe that increasing the cost of a hotel room by a couple of pounds a night is too high a price to pay for better funded local services?”

Sturgeon spotted the open goal.

She responded: "Richard Leonard should maybe listen to the answers before he reads out the next scripted question – but can I thank [him] for paying such warm tribute to the success of the Scottish Government in boosting tourism in Scotland."

If he spent more time listening to answers and less time trying to score political points, maybe he'd have more luck?