The National:

YOU know the phrases: "an equal partnership", "the precious Union", etc.

The Tories love trotting these out, assuring us that Scotland is valued and respected by the UK Government.

Unfortunately for Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, he let the mask slip in an interview on BBC Radio 4's Today show.

The presenter had a big question for him. She asked: "How will you deal with opposition to no deal in Scotland, not least from the leader of the Scottish Conservatives, Ruth Davidson, who said she won’t accept it?"

He politely refrained from the honest answer of "why would I care what Ruth Davidson thinks", but he might wish he hadn't.

Instead, Rabb replied: “Well, as Unionists, we’re committed to respecting the democratic mandate of the referendum which applied to the whole of the United Kingdom and that was very clear.

“We of course, though, need to make sure we reassure all sectors of the economy and all regions of the United Kingdom, which is why the Prime Minister is up in Scotland today in the first of a series of visits around the Union.”

In case you missed it, let's highlight the key section from that: "...all regions of the United Kingdom, which is why the Prime Minister is up in Scotland today."

Scotland is not, in fact, a region. Scotland is a nation. But here, Raab makes the Tory mindset clear – on the day Johnson is north of the Border talking about the importance of the Union.

It's far easier to dismiss Scotland's majority vote against Brexit, ripping us out of the European Union against our will, when you're operating from the perspective of Scotland being a "region", not a "country". It isn't good enough.