IT will come as no surprise to your readers that the Tory campaign strategy in Scotland revolves around constitutional issues. The plan is to convert cross-party Union supporters into Tory voters. Bang on about the constitution long enough and voters uneasy about voting for more food banks can give themselves permission to do so by thinking of it as a perfectly reasonable vote for the Union.

So let’s not fall into this trap. Let’s not argue over the constitution. Let’s talk about bread-and-butter issues. We could start with Wednesday’s End Child Poverty report for the whole UK. This shows that a staggering 30% of children live in relative poverty. That’s nine out of every 30 children in a classroom. Astonishingly, there are 10 constituencies in England and Wales where child poverty affects more than 50% of the child population.

Why? Because of policy decisions of Ruth Davidson’s Tory party: the decision to remove the link between inflation and benefits; the decision to impose a four-year benefit freeze; the two-child limit for tax credits and Universal Credit.

As a direct result of tax and benefit decisions made by the Westminster government since 2010, another body, the Institute for Fiscal Studies, projects that the number of children in the UK in relative poverty will have risen from 3.6 million to 4.3 million by 2020.

The best route out of poverty is hard work according to Ruth Davidson’s party, which cynically ignores the fact that two-thirds (67 per cent) of children growing up in poverty live in a family where at least one member works.

Independence supporters in campaigning mode need to focus their indignation on the bread-and-butter issues directly caused by Ruth Davidson and her Tory party. Because she doesn’t want voters to think about them.

Frances Roberts

THE Tory leaflet which I have received in this European election campaign barely mentions the issues surrounding Brexit other than to promulgate the lie that “the SNP want to ignore the result of the EU referendum”.

The SNP have consistently recognised that result in which every electoral division in Scotland voted to remain. It is the Tory government which has ignored, with monumental contempt, the will of the electorate of Scotland. For three years now they have denied any significant inclusion of Scotland’s elected government in their incompetent and frequently idle negotiations with our European partners.

To plagiarise an old election song by my dear friend Jack Foley:-

The time to show them has arrived
Forget the bribes, forget the propaganda
Remember instead all the years they’ve skived,
Pay them back now for Scotland

KM Campbell

HAVING now had time to study the four EU election leaflets that came through my letterbox this morning, I am still totally appalled by the Tory leaflet. Quite apart from the fact that they refer to “Scotland Region” (what an insult!), they have virtually nothing to offer in terms of policy – only “No to a second independence referendum”.

What on earth does that have to do with the European poll, and who, apart from died-in-the-wool Conservatives, would be attracted by that negative message? They deserve to do as badly as is widely forecast.

Ian Baillie

LEAVE voters inevitably respond with the following answers to a challenge about why they voted to leave: take control of our borders, make our own laws, negotiate our own trade deals, regain our sovereignty and more money for the NHS. The unspoken reality underlying these buzz words designed to mislead is: accelerated immigration from other parts of the world to fill vacancies in the NHS, farming etc; deregulation of business, markets and worker protection; inability to negotiate trade deals better than those we have now; denial of human activity causing global warming; conceding sovereignty to the USA (and possibly China) and zero financial premium rather than the promised £350 million per week.

For people of moderate incomes the reality will not be the good news promised by the Leave campaign.

Mike Underwood

KEVIN McKenna’s support for an “unkempt and unruly ... populism”, as opposed to the gentrifiers of political discourse like Kezia Dugdale is timely. Nigel Farage was due at Edinburgh’s Corn Exchange last night where, in all probability, he will have received some well deserved proletarian-style heckling. It was ever thus. Politics is deeply conflictual and rightly passionate.

Dugdale’s desire for courtesy and respect across party lines is self-serving. Why should we esteem, for example, those politicians of her own party who betrayed their class for a title, an ermine-lined cloak and a few crumbs from the rich man’s table? Hypocrisy on a grand scale describes it, though there are more vernacular expressions that would describe it better, and which have a rightful place in politics. I could mention a few, but they’d be unpublishable.

Alastair McLeish

MANY examples of the inhumanity of the Home Office have been highlighted in The National of late. Now that discussions on Theresa May’s departure date are being brought to a focus, talk is turning to her legacy. We would do well to remember that along with this deeply damaging Brexit debacle, her toxic Home Office service is part of that legacy too. The consequences of which are still so graphically evident. Ruth Davidson seems to greatly admire Theresa May, however, I, for one, will be rejoicing at the political demised of this uncaring, detached and inept Tory Leader and PM.

Iona Easton