The National:

TONY Blair’s knighthood has caused something of a splash.

While more than half a million Brits have signed a petition to have it taken off him, establishment Labour politicians like Keir Starmer and speaker Lindsay Hoyle say the opposite.

Among the stooshie, a BBC reporter shared The National’s December 4 front page on Twitter. It carried the story of the confusion over who exactly holds responsibility for reviewing Blair’s knighthood.

Quoting the headline, the reporter wrote: “Tuesday’s NATIONAL: ‘Who Can Strip Tony Blair Of His Knighthood?’”

Adam Boulton - who recently stepped back from Sky News - didn’t take too kindly to a Scottish paper having the gall to report on the outrage around Blair’s honour.

“You mean the Prime Minister who gave Scotland back its Parliament”, Boulton wrote.

The news that Blair “gave” Scotland Holyrood will come as some news to the some 74% of people who voted to make it happen.

The SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford wrote: “The people in Scotland voted in a referendum for a Scots Parliament, Tony Blair most certainly did not give it back.

“The principle was based on the constitutional convention and the sovereignty of the people of Scotland. Self determination is a right, not the privilege of any PM.”

Blackford wasn’t alone in condemning the statement that Blair “gave” Scotland anything.

“‘Gave’?? Used in this sense, the word smacks of ownership and imperialism. The mindset of Unionists,” Twitter user Paul Kelly commented.

“Come on Scots. Get those forelocks tugged. What an embarrassing and self revelatory comment,” a Sean McPartlin added.

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This might come as some surprise to Boulton, but it’s not only the rebellious Scots who will have been signing that petition. People all over the UK are angry at the honour.

What may not come as a surprise is Boulton’s close links to Blair. In fact, his wife Anji Hunter has known the former prime minister since he was just 15.

During Blair’s time in Downing Street, Hunter was known as his closest and most influential aide.

In 2002, The Telegraph reported: “Ever since he became leader of the Labour party in 1994, the so-called ‘details Queen’ rarely left Mr Blair's side, accompanying him on official trips, running his office and even choosing his ties.”

So why Boulton would have any skin in the game when it comes to defending Tony Blair is beyond us.

To be fair the broadcaster - who stepped down from Sky News at the end of 2021 - did proceed to climb down a little.

Replying to a Steve Kaney who had written “Didn’t realise it was his to give back. Interesting”, Boulton wrote: “Artsy! Delivered the circumstances which gave Scotland back its Parliament - OK. Wouldn’t have happened without his leadership.”

He later clarified that he had meant to start that tweet with the word “arsy”.