SCOTLAND can expect to receive a "tough" treatment from Liz Truss if she becomes prime minister, a Tory MP has suggested.

Brandon Lewis, who is backing the South West Norfolk MP for PM, told Radio 4’s Today Programme that people should look to Truss’s track record in dealing with Brexit negotiations for how she will approach talks with Nicola Sturgeon.

The SNP warned this means Scotland "is in for the hard Brexit treatment” if Truss wins the Tory leadership contest against Rishi Sunak.

Lewis, the former Northern Ireland minister, faced questions after Truss sparked outrage for saying she will "ignore" Sturgeon, calling the First Minister "an attention seeker". The former foreign secretary's campaign team later backtracked on her statement.

READ MORE: Tory MSP calls Liz Truss jibe at Nicola Sturgeon 'ill informed' as backlash grows

Lewis told the BBC the next UK prime minister has to “get on and focus on what matters for people across the country, including people in Scotland" as he rejected calls for a second independence referendum.

Radio 4 presenter Mishal Husain asked: “But calling Nicola Sturgeon an attention seeker? Isn’t that going to alienate people? Liz Truss’s job is going to be to try and safeguard the Union.”

Lewis responded: “And the best way you do that is by showing people that you can deliver for all of the people in Scotland and make sure that they're getting good education, good support in the health service - something that the Scottish Government, the SNP at the moment are not delivering.

"In fact, they're failing quite dramatically on that. Liz wants to make sure wherever you are in the United Kingdom, you have access to good quality education, that you've got more money in your pocket, that businesses are growing and creating jobs and we've got a strong economy.”

Husain told Lewis that if Truss wins the Tory leadership contest and becomes prime minister she would have to sit down and work together with Sturgeon.

The former Tory chair replied: “Actually, Liz has got a very good track record already.

"As foreign secretary, she's had some very tough conversations and given some very tough messages to the EU in terms of dealing with the Brexit issues and the Northern Ireland political issues, but at the same time has still been able to work with our partners and colleagues in the EU around standing up to Putin."

He said Truss had a "very strong track record ... of actually having to give very tough messages, very difficult messages, but still be able to work with people and that's a real talent from somebody who wants to be Prime Minister.”

The SNP rejected that response, accusing Truss of “playing into the Tory hardliner’s playbook” while warning that Scotland is in for the “hard-Brexit treatment”.

The National:

SNP MSP Kaukab Stewart (above) said: “It’s not yet clear whether Liz Truss refuses to work with anyone who doesn’t agree with her but her comments so far make it clear that Scotland is in for the hard-Brexit treatment under her premiership.

“Today, her supporters asked the public to judge her on her record of dealing with the EU - which has been to cave into the Brexit ultras and threaten to provoke a catastrophic trade dispute in the middle of a cost of living crisis.”

READ MORE: Rishi Sunak plans to deradicalise people who 'vilify' UK through Prevent programme

The Glasgow Kelvin politician said Truss “will say and do anything the Tory hardliners want which will be disastrous for Scotland”.

She continued: “The cost of living with Westminster is clear - it’s even more Tory austerity, a deeply damaging Tory Brexit and failure to take meaningful action while energy bills soar.

“People in Scotland will soon have the choice to end Westminster control and consign Tory governments that Scotland didn’t vote for to the dustbin of history.

“But a better future is only possible with the full powers of independence.”