FIRST Minister Nicola Sturgeon clashed with Scottish Tory interim leader Jackson Carlaw at FMQs over Brexit.

Carlaw had raised the topic in the wake of the previous day's indicative votes in the House of Commons, and the First Minister was happy to oblige in the discussion.

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The Tory MSP accused the SNP of failing to vote for their own policy out of single-mindedness on Scottish independence.

Sturgeon mocked his suggestion that the Prime Minister was "prepared to set aside" her position to secure a deal, saying: "Theresa May must be the only leader in living memory who has tried to fall on her own sword and has managed to miss."

Below is the full text of their exchange.

Jackson Carlaw: After months, years even, of sanctimony from the First Minister and her Brexit Secretary, yesterday SNP MPs refused to back the very policy option they have been demanding. Isn’t it the case that what Scotland saw yet again yesterday was that when push comes to shove, for the SNP, it’s not about finding a solution to Brexit, it’s about pursuing their independence obsession.

Nicola Sturgeon: Sorry, presiding officer, it’s hard not to laugh. The Tory Secretary of State for Scotland abstained on every single option in the House of Commons last night. But as Jackson Carlaw rightly says, and indeed belatedly recognises, for two long years, when stopping Brexit didn’t seem possible, the SNP argued for single market, customs union membership compromise. That was ignored by the Tories and indeed by everybody else.

Now, that option, which I think is the minimum you would need to protect Scotland’s interests, wasn’t actually on the ballot paper last night. That said, over the next few days, we will continue to work across parliament for a compromise of that nature if that proves to be the only alternative to a hard Brexit. But let me also say this presiding officer. This whole process, thanks to the Tories, is now such a mess that stopping Brexit altogether must be our top priority.

And moreover, that is now possible. Actually, the highest number of votes cast in the house of Commons last night was for the People’s Vote option. So, you know, the principle that has guided everything we’ve done in this is the protection of Scotland’s interest. I wonder if Jackson Carlaw can tell us what principles have guided the Scottish Tories, because it seems to me the only principle they’ve been abiding by is doing whatever their London bosses have told them to do.

Jackson Carlaw: There was no principle in the way the SNP voted last night. And what I saw in contrast was a Prime Minister prepared to set aside her own premiership to secure a deal. A deal which – contrary to everything the SNP says – will be good for Scotland and will be good for the UK. And by contrast, here’s the First Minister’s record – she angrily demands that the Prime Minister go, she angrily commands when the Prime Minister does go, she angrily then declares that the Prime Minister’s decision, you guessed it, makes the case for independence.

%image('9637113', type="article-full", alt="Jackson Carlaw raised the issue of Brexit at FMQs – despite the shambles his party is in at Westminster")

Faux outrage, grievance, her own one single-minded obsession. Aren’t Scots right to detect just a little bit of a pattern here First Minister?

Nicola Sturgeon: Again, you have to laugh that Jackson Carlaw has come in here today raising the position of the Prime Minister. It’s traditional in politics for leaders to say to colleagues, if you don’t back me on an issue of such importance, I might have to resign. Not in the Tories though, Theresa May’s position is that “if you don’t back me, I’ll stay”. Theresa May must be the only leader in living memory who has tried to fall on her own sword and has managed to miss. It is utterly ridiculous.

The SNP in contrast to the Tories will continue to stand up for Scotland’s interests. That’s what we have done since day one after the Brexit referendum. And the way to stand up not just for Scotland’s interests, but the way to stand up for the interests of the entire UK right now, is to recognise that this Brexit process is a complete and utter mess and put this issue back to the people. So, belatedly, can Jackson Carlaw find it within himself to actually stand up for Scotland, instead of being the last man standing up for Theresa May?

Jackson Carlaw: Presiding Officer, Nicola Sturgeon doesn’t stand up for the Scottish interest, she stands up for nationalist interest.

On Monday, the Prime Minister said she was sceptical that yesterday’s trawl through the alternatives would produce an outcome. She was right. For the avoidance of doubt, no deal was rejected, a second referendum was rejected again, revoking Article 50 was rejected. Yesterday, when it came to the crunch, the First Minister whipped her MPs against supporting her own policy of a customs union and single market membership, and that was defeated too. Doesn’t the result of these votes demonstrate that Alex Neil and Jim Sillars are right – the best way forward to secure an orderly withdrawal is to support the Prime minister’s deal.

Nicola Sturgeon: Well, as I say, the compromise position that the SNP put forward when it looked as if remain wasn’t an option, which is not the case now, incidentally, wasn’t on the ballot paper last night. It has never been our position to accept just a customs union. That would not be sufficient to protect Scotland’s interest.

But I disagree with Jackson Carlaw in his characterisation of what happened last night, because if you look at two off the options, yes a customs union alone, but also a second referendum, both of those options got more votes in the House of Commons last night than the Prime Minister’s deal has managed on either of the occasions it’s been brought forward and defeated, so actually I think that does give the House of Commons something to move forward with into this week.

And no, I don’t think the thing to do now is to vote for a bad deal. A bad deal that would take Scotland out of the EU, out of the single market and out of the customs union. The right thing to do now is to put this issue back to the people – and I’ll say again, if Jackson Carlaw was interested in actually standing up for Scotland or indeed the interests of the UK, that’s the option he would be arguing for too.

Jackson Carlaw: The argument for many against the Prime Minister’s deal is that there was support for an alternative. The votes in the House of Commons last night demonstrated that there is not. It’s clear that there is a deal. One which secures an orderly way forward, one supported by Jean-Claude Juncker, supported by Donald Tusk, supported by 27 of our other EU partners. Backed by the business community here in Scotland, by the whisky industry, your fishermen, that’s the prime Minister’s deal.

Surely after all the confusion, with every other alternative being rejected yesterday, the national interested is served by backing that compromise. Surely it’s time to back the deal and get on with it?

Nicola Sturgeon: The Prime Minister’s deal may be or may not be backed by all of the people that Jackson Carlaw has just listed there – the problem is the Prime Minister’s deal is not backed by his own party! And that’s why she cannot get it through. Even if every single SNP MP was to have backed the Prime Minister’s deal, it would still have gone down to massive defeat.

It is time that the Prime Minister and her sole remaining defender, Jackson Carlaw, or sole remaining defenders the Scottish Tories, accepted that that deal is dead, and it is now time to move on to another option. The option that got most votes last night in the House of Commons was the People’s Vote, that’s the right thing to do.

And again, what we see today is Jackson Carlaw failing to stand up for Scotland’s interest, and simply standing up for Theresa May and his London bosses.