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It will be extraordinary if the Tory MSPs, who are freer to say what they really think, all simply toe the party line. Patrick Harvie MSP

Scottish Greens co-convener Patrick Harvie MSP says pressure will be on Tory MSPs during this afternoon’s quizzing at Holyrood of Theresa May’s deputy, Cabinet Office minister David Lidington.

Mr Harvie, a member of the Finance & Constitution Committee, whose members will jointly question Mr Lidington along with Holyrood’s Europe Committee, said:

“This will be the first opportunity for the UK Government to defend their embattled Withdrawal Agreement to the Scottish Parliament. Coming the day after their own economic analysis, and the Bank of England’s, show the damage Brexit will do Mr Lidington has a very weak hand to play.

“The pressure will also be on the Scottish Conservative MSPs. At Westminster their MP colleagues are nominally under the same whip, but they’re splitting in all directions. It will be extraordinary if the Tory MSPs, who are freer to say what they really think, all simply toe the party line.

“Theresa May’s proposals will deprive us of our rights as EU citizens, greatly reduce our ability to attract people to come and make their lives in Scotland, put our environment, our economy and our workplace protections at risk, and would amount to an act of national self-harm.

“When it inevitably falls at Westminster we need a clear way forward, and that must include giving the public the final say, including the chance to put an end to this mess and stop Brexit altogether.”