JACKSON Carlaw’s hardline track record has been revealed after the Tory MSP launch his bid to become leader of the Scottish Tories.

Nominations to replace Ruth Davidson’s former position as Tory leader opened this week – with Jackson Carlaw first off the mark to officially announce his candidacy.

READ MORE: Blow for Michelle Ballantyne as Tories support Carlaw as leader

The dossier, compiled by the SNP, illuminates his many gaffes and blunders throughout his political career, from racist jokes to his defence of austerity which has driven millions into poverty.

The National: Ruth Davidson's former position is up for grabsRuth Davidson's former position is up for grabs

READ MORE: Carlaw officially in the race for Scottish Tory leadership

Commenting, SNP MSP Jenny Gilruth said: “This record exposes the truth about Jackson Carlaw, and reveals his history of blunders, gaffes and downright offensive statements.

“We all know that Boris Johnson is no stranger to scandal, but Jackson Carlaw’s backing for hard-line right-wing Tory policies and his ill-judged rhetoric shows he is little different from his Downing Street boss.

“Jackson Carlaw has simply acted as an apologist for the worst excesses of Tory policy when it comes to issues like austerity and Universal Credit, while his party have still to properly explain the precise sources of the murky, dark money donations they have accepted.

“The Scottish Tories’ would be-leader is happy to see the party pulled even further to the right – it’s time for Scotland to choose a different path and take our future into our own hands with independence.”

READ MORE: Jackson Carlaw promises to diversify Conservatives in leadership bid


The National: Jackson Carlaw

In 2005, Carlaw faced backlash for a series of jokes ridiculing Chinese tourists and about the Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe’s chiropodist.

He said he had met a Chinese couple in Edinburgh who said they were "Tories". He was “delighted” until he realised they meant "tourists" not "Tories".

He also remarked on Tory defeat, which he said was no longer an option for the Conservatives, adding: “The only person recorded as saying ‘de-feat’ is marvellous is Robert Mugabe’s chiropodist."

READ MORE: General Election: Carlaw left red-faced for saying he voted TWICE


The National: Former PM Gordon Brown became the butt of an insensitive jokeFormer PM Gordon Brown became the butt of an insensitive joke

In 2010, Carlaw was urged to stand down as an MSP after a sick online joke about Gordon Brown committing suicide just months after losing the UK General Election. He asked Twitter users whether the former prime minister was visiting Beachy Head – an area with cliffs which are notorious for suicide – on a charity walk before saying “alas not”.

At the time, Labour MSP Ken Macintosh said: "How Mr Carlaw ever thought making these sick comments was acceptable is beyond me. He should be ashamed of himself and apologise immediately."

READ MORE: Carlaw forced to apologise for suggesting Leonard abstained in vote


The National: Jackson Carlaw

In 2011, Carlaw claimed that the creation of Universal Credit would “transform the lives of millions for the better”.

He said: "This LCM is a device to assist the Scottish Government in the implementation of legislation," he added.

"To be clever with it, as the motion seeks to do, is opportunistic, frankly pointless and potentially reckless, if in consequence any unforeseen delay transpires in the parallel drafting of primary legislation in this Parliament, which will occasion delays in the payment of benefits to those who need them."

Universal Credit has been catastrophic for many people across the UK, with almost one-third of private landlords unwilling to rent to claimants. The Trussell Trust revealed a 52% increase in food bank usage in Universal Credit rollout areas in 2018.

READ MORE: Jackson Carlaw would campaign for Brexit again in people's vote


The National: Jackson Carlaw

In 2013, Carlaw claimed that the UK constitution is “perfect” and “enduring” during a Newsnight Scotland interview.

The Unionist politician said: “Well, the reason – I mean, I think it’s worth pointing out Gordon, we haven’t had a written constitution but unlike all the other nations that Alex Salmond identified today, we’ve endured. They were all the subject of invasion or revolution or anarchy or all the turmoil of the last century. Without a written constitution, the United Kingdom – the four countries of the United Kingdom – prevailed”

“And so, you know, our arrangement has worked perfectly well.”

READ MORE: Jackson Carlaw claims indyref2 should not take place until 2054


The National: Jackson Carlaw MSP, Scottish Conservative deputy leader (Picture: Gordon Terris)

In 2018, the Tory Deputy Leader came under fire for a crass and offensive comment regarding the Second World War.

Carlaw tweeted: "73 years ago today Nazi Germany surrendered, bringing an end to the European conflict in WW2.

"Not one time did people ask whether those defending our small island nation were from Gloucester or Glasgow.

"It didn't matter. We were one people standing alone."

Veterans Minister Keith Brown called for Davidson to make Carlaw apologise. He said: "Jackson Carlaw's crass comments are not only historically inaccurate – many will find them deeply insulting.

"Of course it is right that we mark the bravery of Britain's servicemen and women – and citizens – in helping to defeat the Nazis, but to casually disregard the sacrifices made by people across occupied Europe, and those from the Soviet Union, the United States and from around the world is both crass and offensive."

READ MORE: First Minister hits back at Jackson Carlaw over sexist insult


The National: Ruth Davidson and her deputy Jackson Carlaw

In April 2019, Carlaw described the Tories' hugely controversial rape clause as “awkward” and defended the measure, claiming it should not be scrapped.

The rape clause meant that victims of rape who conceived a child during an attack or coercive relationship would have to declare the circumstances of conception to qualify as an exemption to child tax credit and Universal credit cuts.

Carlaw said: "Any form of welfare benefit reform is difficult. It touches on sensitive issues.

"Back in 2015, we were committed to welfare reform and one of those reforms was that there would be a child tax credit for the first two children in each family.

"Multiple births was one of [the exemptions], children adopted from care was another and also any child that was born as the result of non-consensual sex.

"We think that it's right that benefit should be attached but I accept it's an awkward policy."

READ MORE: Tory who said people on benefits should have fewer children joins leadership bid


The National:

Last September, it was reported that Carlaw was facing questions over “dark money” donations, where he was asked if he would return money from the SUAT (Scottish Unionist Association Trust) which was fined £1800 by the Electoral Commission for three offences related to undeclared income of more than £200,000 and £100,000 of spending.

READ MORE: Elections Watchdog finds Tory party guilty of dark money funding


The National: Jackson Carlaw, MSP

Carlaw was also accused of misleading his party when he switched his stance on a No-Deal Brexit. The Scottish Conservatives were previously in opposition to exiting the EU without a deal, but Carlaw made the decision without informing his shadow cabinet.

This left members of his team furious, but Scottish Secretary Alister Jack defended the move by saying it brought the Scottish Tories “into line with the UK government”.

READ MORE: WATCH: FM brands Carlaw's Brexit U-turn 'deeply humiliating'