The Daily Telegraph is reporting that David Cameron and Annabel Goldie are considering a former top MI6 man, Andrew Fulton, as the new Chairman of the Scottish Conservatives. This is what the article tells us about him:
- Last posting was head of station in Washington. He also served in East Berlin, Rome and Saigon.
- He is now a visiting law professor at Glasgow University.
- He is an advisor to Armor, a private security intelligence firm, that also employs Sir Malcolm Rifkind.
- "More George Smiley than James Bond" according to The Telegraph.
The news come at the end of a notable week for Scotland’s Conservatives. Earlier this week the Scottish Tories won £114m of concessions from the SNP in return for supporting their budget. Cameron Watt of the Centre for Social Justice was particiularly pleased that one consequence of this budget deal will be a re-balancing of drug treatment towards abstinence based programmes aimed at recovery rather than maintenance.
Iain Duncan Smith’s report on the social problems of Glasgow also won widespread attention and produced considerable soul-searching within a Scottish welfare establishment that has persisted with welfare policies that have failed to reduce dependency
The Economist pays tribute to the Scottish Tories in this week’s edition:
"The Tories’ reappearance on stage after ten years in the wilderness is a sign of big shifts in Scottish politics. The once-dominant Labour Party is out of power. Its leader in the Scottish Parliament, Wendy Alexander, is mired in two investigations into party donations and unable to oppose the SNP effectively… Of the three main opposition parties, the Tories played the cleverest game. “I argued two years ago, to much derision, that we could achieve far more of our policies with a minority than a coalition government without compromising our principles,” says Annabel Goldie, the Scottish Tory leader. Indeed, she reckons she has forced the SNP’s hand on a number of important issues—money for another 500 policemen, restoring the original SNP pledge, cuts in local taxes for 150,000 small businesses to be made by 2009 rather than 2010 and a new strategy to combat drug addiction by concentrating on abstinence and recovery rather than on replacement therapies such as methadone."