The National:

DOMINIC Cummings telling the world that Boris Johnson doesn’t like devolution and would love to see it abolished isn’t, in my definition of it anyway, news.

Anyone who has watched Johnson over the last two years as Prime Minister displaying a clownish face to mask a ruthlessly ambitious politician can have been in no doubt that our country, and the views of our people, come very low on his list of priorities. Don’t forget his earlier track record too.

When he was editor of the increasingly right-wing anti-Scottish magazine “The Spectator” he actually published a poem which called us a “verminous race”. As the Bible puts it, “by their fruits shall ye know them”.

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So the idea that Johnson would respect the decision making of Scots assembled in their own Parliament, be relaxed about our right to decide on how we are governed, and just shrug when voters here reject his party at every national electoral contest is as ludicrous as his whole fake ruffled-haired persona, behind which lurks a devious intelligence, a breathtaking selfishness, and an inability to tell the truth.

In one sense, an open move by him to abolish the Scottish Parliament would bring to a welcome head the whole issue.

It might, for example, force the Labour Party to confront the reality of the choice between no Scottish Parliament or a free and unfettered one. It would make the job - and indeed political existence - of the current crop of Scottish Tories completely impossible. Even Douglas Ross couldn’t squirm his way out of that one, though of course he has hedged his bets by keeping a seat at Westminster.

The National:

But of course Johnson, with the attention span of a goldfish and the courage to match, is not likely to go for the type of apocalyptic confrontation such a move would produce. Instead what we will see is continued undermining of our institutions dressed up in all sort of false language and pushed forward in a deceitful fashion by those around him who fawn on his wishes and depend on him for their preferment - ciphers such as Alister Jack the Secretary of State against Scotland and David Frost, a man who has never been elected to so much as the committee of a bowling club but who now sits in the UK Cabinet.

Devolution is an inherently unstable state, because it can be diminished or reversed without in the end requiring the consent of the Scottish people. Some 22 years on from its establishment (and 24 from its endorsement in the 1997 referendum) it is very clear that the only way to preserve democratic decision making in Scotland is to move on to independence.

That is also the only way to return to the prosperity and protection of full membership of the EU which Scotland voted for five years ago but which has been taken away from us along with our individual European citizenship.

A bill for that referendum is ready to start its passage through the Scottish Parliament and once it is possible and safe to hold a proper, detailed, serious national debate on independence and seek the consent of the people to that step then that will take place.

READ MORE: SNP react as Dominic Cummings reveals Boris Johnson wants to scrap Holyrood

That bill, published in draft form in March and contained as a binding commitment in the SNP manifesto which was enthusiastically endorsed in the May Holyrood election, does not depend on the goodwill of Johnson to secure its passage at Holyrood nor to be implemented thereafter. Nor does it need any help with decisions on franchise or question from Michael Gove - all that is decided and in place.

The National: Much excitement was provoked at the weekend by Michael Gove’s tumbling and bumbling on the BBC

A definitive and decisive debate on Scotland’s national future is coming anyway and there is nothing Johnson can do to stop it, save try to use the courts to crush democracy, a move that never works for long.

Evidence of ill will to Scotland and intentions and actions to frustrate and damage the normal operation of our legitimate institutions - not from the people of England but from their current leaders - will be germane to that debate.

And what could be more destructive to the prospects of Unionist success than a Prime Minister who constantly claims to be in support of devolution and Scotland but who is revealed, again and again, in his words and deeds to be lying about that just as he does about everything else?