ALISTER Jack has entered the Tory civil war to blast Jacob Rees-Mogg's dismissal of Douglas Ross as a "lightweight".

The Scottish Secretary said in a radio interview he tried to talk Ross out of calling for the PM to resign, trying to persuade him to wait for the outcome of the investigation by civil servant Sue Gray.

But he rounded on his fellow Cabinet minister's disdain for Ross to reject the claim the Scottish Conservative leader is a “lightweight”.

"Over the last 48 hours I have had a number of conversation with Douglas and asked him to wait til Sue Gray reports. She is a very senior civil servant," Jack told Bauer radio.

READ MORE: Jacob Rees-Mogg's attacks on Douglas Ross backfire spectacularly

"I would say that Douglas is far from being a lightweight. He is a very serious politician. He is a very good adversary to Nicola Sturgeon. He took the Scottish Conservatives into the elections last May and not only did he hold onto all our seats, but he recorded our highest ever vote and should be well respected politician."

During the interview Jack said he backs the Prime Minister “110%”.

The Scottish Secretary also supported the PM in other interviews he gave on Thursday.

He other reporters: "Boris Johnson has been a fantastic Prime Minister.

"I have worked very closely with him throughout the pandemic - he was focused on getting the vaccine developed and rolled out, and now the boosters.

"We were told he couldn’t get a trade deal with the EU and he got one, and other trade deals are forthcoming. He is a very, very good Prime Minister for the United Kingdom and I fully support him."

The attacks by Rees-Mogg and fellow Cabinet minister Michael Gove on Ross have backfired spectacularly.

The SNP said the belittling of the Scottish Tory leader "made the case for independence" while a host of commentators suggested the "arrogant" remarks reflected the Conservative government's attitude towards Scotland.

Labour said the Tories were the "greatest threat to the Union".

Mogg described Ross as "not a big figure" in politics and in a later interview said he was a "lightweight" while praising Scottish Secretary Alister Jack - a man chosen by the PM for his role.

Rees-Mogg said that Jack, the Scottish Secretary, “is a big figure is very supportive of the Prime Minister”....“Douglas Ross has always been quite a lightweight figure.”

Gove dismissed Ross as he was "up in Elgin", a reference to the Tory representing Moray at Westminster.

The verbal assaults were issued after the Scottish Conservative chief called for Boris Johnson to resign after he admitted attending a lockdown drinks event in the Number 10 garden in May 2020.

They were swiftly noted by SNP politicians and commentators.

Responding to Rees-Mogg's description of Ross as "a lightweight", which he made on BBC's Newsnight last night, the historian Simon Schama tweeted: "Quite an achievement for Mogg on @BBCNewsnight to turn an already massive crisis into a yet bigger one, involving the Union."

Meanwhile, the SNP accused Jack of "desperately clinging on to his ministerial job" and putting his own career interests ahead of the interests of the people of Scotland.

The SNP's Shadow Scotland Secretary Mhairi Black MP said: "Rather than putting the interests of the people of Scotland first, Alister Jack is desperately clinging on to his ministerial job and perks and putting his own career interests first. 

"In a clear snub to Douglas Ross – who was dismissed and belittled by his Westminster masters as a 'lightweight' and not a big figure – Alister Jack has played his yes man role to rule-breaking boozy party host Boris Johnson once again by shamefully falling into line and propping him up.

"The reality of this bitter civil war is that Scottish Tory MPs, including Ross and Jack, put Boris Johnson in power and gave the green light to every damaging policy this broken Tory government has imposed – from an extreme Brexit to callous cuts to Universal Credit.

"The only way to escape this corrupt, scandal-ridden Westminster system for good is by becoming an independent country." 

As Tory MSPs entered the Holyrood chamber for First Ministers' Questions on Thursday journalists quizzed them on the attacks on their leader by Westminster Conservatives.

Scottish Tory MSP Jamie Greene said Rees-Mogg should “have a long lie down” in response to him calling leader Douglas Ross “lightweight”.

Speaking to the PA news agency Greene said: “(Mr Rees-Mogg) should go and have a long lie down, maybe not in the House of Commons.”

When asked if he believes Ross is a lightweight, Greene said: “Not at all, he is a fine leader and he has my full support.”