‘Rattled’ Boris Johnson shows contempt for Scotland in Mayoral battle

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By a Newsnet reporter
 
Outspoken Tory Boris Johnson has been accused of using “twisted logic” after claiming that more jobs would be created in Strathclyde if public cash was invested in a London region rather than in Scotland.
 
The controversial former Tory MP who is currently vying with rival Ken Livingstone for the role of Mayor of London made the remark in a comment he gave to the Huffington Post.

By a Newsnet reporter
 
Outspoken Tory Boris Johnson has been accused of using “twisted logic” after claiming that more jobs would be created in Strathclyde if public cash was invested in a London region rather than in Scotland.
 
The controversial former Tory MP who is currently vying with rival Ken Livingstone for the role of Mayor of London made the remark in a comment he gave to the Huffington Post.

Johnson told the online journal, he said: “I’m making the argument to the Treasury that a pound spent in Croydon is far more of value to the country than a pound spent in Strathclyde.  You will generate jobs in Strathclyde far more effectively if you invest in parts of London.”

The SNP have responded by claiming Mr Johnson has been “rattled” by the First Minister taking his jobs for Scotland campaign to the heart of London this week, where Mr Salmond was a guest at the Institute of Directors.

The nationalists said the controversial politician had let the Tories true colours show in disastrous fashion.

The extrovert London Mayoral candidate’s blundering comment has been heavily criticised by SNP MSP Kenneth Gibson, Convener of the Finance Committee.

Commenting Mr Gibson said:

“Boris is clearly rattled by the First Minister taking his jobs for Scotland campaign to the heart of London, in his presentation to the Institute of Directors conference at the 02 Centre.

“Scotland is ranked number one in the UK for inward investment in terms of job creation – and Boris knows this, so his silly comments only further highlight the facts, whether Boris likes them or not.

“He has given the game away and the mask has slipped, this is the true face of the Tory party now showing.  Suggesting that you create jobs in Strathclyde by investing in Croydon is twisted logic only the Tories could come up with.”

Mr Gibson pointed to recent employment figures that show Scotland’s economy outperforming the UK as a whole.  Latest GDP figures have also revealed that under the Tory-led UK government’s policies the UK has plunged into another recession.

This week’s CBI Scotland Industrial Trends report showed business optimism in Scotland at an 18 month high.

Mr Gibson repeated his party’s calls for more capital investment to protect jobs in Scotland and added:
 
“However we cannot escape the impact of the UK approach and more capital spending is vital to keep pushing jobs and recovery forward.  We can’t risk allowing Westminster to damage the recovery we are building in Scotland.

“The Scottish Government has already written to the Prime Minister with the list of 300 million pounds of ‘shovel-ready’ projects across Scotland to boost growth and support thousands of jobs.
 
“It is time for the Tories to recognise the compelling case for additional infrastructure investment to build sustained recovery – instead of putting forward extremely spurious arguments about helping Scotland by investing in South East England.

“The actions of the Scottish Government and its agencies are paying dividends, and there have been very positive announcements recently – such as Gamesa’s decision to bring their wind power manufacturing facility and 800 jobs to Leith, and GlaxoSmithKline’s 100 million pounds expansion plans for sites in Montrose and Irvine.”

Boris Johnson recently demanded ‘devo-max’ for London arguing that it should no longer be considered a “cash cow” for other regions in the UK.

He claimed that UK Ministers had been “very receptive” to his suggestion.