• MySTV

SNP MP flashes red card in Commons during attack on Tory

Douglas Ross is missing universal credit vote to officiate at football match in Barcelona.

An SNP MP brandished a red card during Prime Minister's Questions in an attack on a Scottish Tory who is missing a crucial vote to officiate at a football match.

Douglas Ross will be unable to cast his vote after the Commons debate on universal credit as he will be in Spain running the line as an assistant referee when Barcelona take on Olympiakos at the Nou Camp.

SNP MP John McNally pulled the red card from his pocket at PMQs on Wednesday, asking Theresa May what message the absence would send to members of the public who were "expected to turn up to their day jobs or face sanctions".

The Prime Minister responded by defending Ross, who represents Moray, saying Scottish Tory MPs are doing more for Scottish interests at Westminster "than the Scottish Nationalists have ever done".

Labour are hoping to win a symbolic victory in an opposition day vote later on Wednesday, which will call for the roll-out of universal credit reforms to be paused.

The expansion of universal credit, merging six benefits into one, has been plagued by a number of issues.

Thousands of claimants have had to wait longer than the standard six weeks to receive payments, a period already criticised by charities as being too long.

Many have been plunged into debt and arrears as they wait to receive their funds.

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1400156-universal-credit-vote-set-to-expose-conservative-divisions/ | default

McNally, MP for Falkirk, asked May: "Does the Prime Minister notice that I am wearing a red card in my pocket today?

"She will be aware that the honourable member for Moray is not in his place. Indeed, he is in Barcelona doing his other job, today of all days.

"What signal does she think this sends to hard-working members of the public who are expected to turn up to their day jobs or face sanctions?"

May replied: "I think the constituents of Moray will be very pleased that they have a Conservative member of parliament who is seeing their interests in this House.

"And I can say to him that the Conservatives, the Scottish Conservative members, are doing more for the interests of Scotland in this parliament than the Scottish Nationalists have ever done."

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1400112-tory-mp-to-miss-benefits-debate-for-linesman-duties/ | default

Fellow Scottish Conservative MP Andrew Bowie had earlier defended his colleague, saying Ross had personally raised concerns over welfare reforms with work and pensions secretary David Gauke.

Bowie said: "I think the people of Moray are quite happy for him to continuing refereeing as well as being their MP and he's doing a very good job at both."

He added: "Douglas has held over 50 surgeries since becoming a member of parliament."

Bowie spoke out after shadow Scotland Office minister Paul Sweeney accused Ross of having a "perverse sense of priorities".

The Labour MP said: "The rollout of universal credit has blighted lives across the country, forcing many to rely on food banks and crisis grants to get by.

"Yet Mr Ross doesn't even have the decency to turn up to parliament and explain why he supports putting people through such misery.

Ross has been an MP since June, when he ousted the SNP's Westminster leader Angus Robertson to win the Moray seat.

It is not the first time he has missed parliamentary duties for his second job as an assistant referee, a role which earns him around thousands of pounds in addition to his salary as an MP.

Last year, while as an MSP before standing successfully for a Westminster seat, Ross missed a number of justice committee meetings and a vote on a motion concerning the SNP's council tax plans.

Ross last officiated a European club football match in August when he ran the line at the Europa League qualifying match between NK Domzale and Marseille.

Westminster's register of MPs' interests shows he was paid £1436.35 for the game.

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1373722-msp-missed-key-meetings-to-officiate-at-champions-league-games/ | default

Download: The STV News app is Scotland's favourite and is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from Google Play. Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
Forgot password?
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This must be at least 6 characters long.
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long.
You must be over 16 to join STV.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
We need this to check that you live in an STV region.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid postcode
Would you like us to email you about our great shows and services from time to time?
We'll only send emails we think you'll like (see example) based on information you have supplied and shows you have watched on STV Player. For details on emails and advertising, see our STV & You page.
Would you like to receive emails from the Scottish Children's Lottery about draws, instant games and competitions?
We support the Scottish Children's Lottery (SCL), which is managed by our colleagues at STV ELM Ltd. You can find out more about the SCL on its website, including its Privacy Policy.

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, and understand our Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.


We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.


Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.


Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.



Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.