The National:

THE Scottish Tories are furious about Boris Johnson’s “disaster” comments. They want to use their conference this weekend to show they are dedicated to the Union. They want to get their message across to the Scottish people that they are strong believers in devolution and it’s just the SNP that are a disaster, you see.

So, to prove that they get Scotland and they’re not the anti-devolution party of yester-year, what better way than to kick off today’s proceedings with the Scottish Secretary giving his speech in front of a giant portrait of Margaret Thatcher?

It’s not a joke. Alister Jack gave his speech in front of a painting of the former prime minister.

It would be difficult to think of a person more disliked in Scotland. What an absolutely incredible choice.

Dear reader, you could probably imagine for yourself what Jack’s speech included. Something, something, “divisive referendum”, something something, “once-in-a-generation”.

The man who said there should be no new referendum for 25-40 years is not backing down.

He told the conference: “SNP ministers need to take the batteries out of the grievance machine, stop stirring conflict with the UK Government and seek to work with us instead.

“They will not be forgiven if they place their ideological obsession with separating from the United Kingdom above the huge effort we must all make to bounce back from the misery of Covid.”

READ MORE: Boris Johnson warned Tory attempts to block indyref2 are ‘doomed to fail’

Fascinating that the Tories can make these kind of claims just weeks before they rip us out of the EU, likely with No-Deal, in the middle of a pandemic …

Jack also insisted the Prime Minister is a “wholehearted supporter of devolution”.

We’re looking forward to seeing how Johnson’s speech plays out later today.

Great work calling devolution a disaster just days before this conference …