TONY Blair’s former director of political operations has called for the Union flag to be stuck on “every single piece” of UK Government spending in Scotland.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Week in Westminster, John McTernan said that Boris Johnson and Keir Starmer’s current strategy of speaking in front of the Union flag is “overshow”.

During a debate on the re-emergence of the UK flag on party broadcasts and speeches, he argued there’re was something “strange” about this US-style strategy.

READ MORE: Anas Sarwar announced as Scottish Labour's new leader ahead of Holyrood election

“You don’t need to tell us you do love our country because you want to be prime minister of our country or you are Prime Minister of our country,” he said. “There’s something very very strange about this American importation.”

However when the discussion moved on to reference the flag’s place in Scotland, McTernan defended its use.

He told the programme: “The flag in Scotland should be stuck onto every single piece of Government spending. You know the way the European Union put their flag with the circle of stars on it on every bit  of infrastructure spending that they had any element in directing? We need to show that flow.”

McTernan was speaking on the programme alongside Kerry Perrior, a former adviser to Theresa May.

The National: Home Secretary Theresa May

Perrior told McTernan that while at Number 10 she had called for Union flags to be more visible in Scotland.

“I agree with that position and I tried to advocate for that when I was at Number 10,” she told the strategist. “Except someone pointed out to me that the EU flag being absolutely plastered across England over the last few years didn’t work otherwise people wouldn’t have voted for Brexit.

“So I kind of got back in my box as it were. But I do think there is something about that.

“There’s this argument at Number 10, whether we love bomb Scotland and that means showing how much we value their partnership or we go to war with them and we beat them. Either or you’re going to see a lot more flags, many more flags in the next year.”

The host also asked the two commentators why they felt the Union flag was becoming more visible in UK politics.

READ MORE: Scottish flag 'ripped from the railings' of William Wallace monument in London

McTernan suggested: “I think people are showing the flag because in a way they can’t do other kinds of pictures.

“For Sir Keir, he wouldn’t need to show a flag if he was visiting a Trident submarine being constructed. The message would be ‘I support the deterrent, I support defence construction, I support manufacturing, I support Red Wall seats and workers’ … so I think there’s a bit of we’re trapped in our homes and people are set-dressing in the way that some people just polish a book and put it lined up along the back behind them.”

READ MORE: Did Nicola Sturgeon order the Union flag be replaced with the EU's

Perrior shared her belief that it was a “bit weird”. She said: – “I also think it’s kind of a stolen thing from America, it’s very American. This kind of behaviour. I also think it’s a bit weird. Because if you’re standing in front of a lectern at an official event fair enough, if you’re meeting a foreign leader absolutely. If you’re in your bedroom with your family downstairs …”

The discussion came after Keir Starmer was asked about his frequent use of the Union flag during an appearance on LBC.

The National:

The Labour leader told the radio show: “I don’t have any problem at all with the Union Jack, when I do my addresses to the nation and my press conferences we do have the flag because it’s the flag of the United Kingdom. Also I’m patriotic and I’m very comfortable with that, I don’t have any problem with that. “