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Meeting of the Parliament [Draft]

Meeting date: Thursday, May 9, 2024


Contents


Minister and Junior Minister

The Presiding Officer (Alison Johnstone)

The next item of business is a debate on motions S6M-13154 and S6M-13155, in the name of John Swinney, on the appointment of a Scottish minister and the appointment of a junior Scottish minister. I remind members that, under rule 11.3.1 of standing orders, the questions on the motions will be put immediately after the debate.

14:00  

The First Minister (John Swinney)

It is with great pleasure that I rise to move the motions, in my name, that Kate Forbes be appointed as a Scottish minister and that Ivan McKee be appointed as a junior Scottish minister. In doing so, let me set out the approach that my ministerial team will take.

When I accepted the Parliament’s nomination for First Minister, I made it clear that I would be a First Minister for all of Scotland. Governments across the world are facing substantial challenges and, given those challenges, I believe that, when possible, the best approach is to build consensus in our Parliament.

In recent days, I have spoken of the political ground that my party and my Government will occupy, which is firmly in the mainstream, moderate, left-of-centre tradition. I believe that that is where most people in Scotland want us to be and that that therefore offers a sound starting point for that consensus building. I will work with colleagues across the Parliament to secure agreement when we can on the issues that matter to the people of our country.

For our colleagues in the Scottish Green Party, with whom we have shared a partnership Government in recent years, I hope that we will be able to find common ground, albeit without a formal agreement in place. In appointing my ministerial team, I have made clear to all my ministers the need to do everything in our power to help to bring about as much agreement as possible in the Parliament. Of course, there will be occasions when it is not possible to build consensus, or when ideas come forward from parties that have alternative but equally legitimate policy agendas but we simply cannot reach points of agreement. In both instances, we will listen and we will consider. If it is not possible to reach agreement—of course, in any vibrant democracy, argument is essential—I reiterate, for my part, that our engagement with members will be undertaken with courtesy and respect.

My ministerial team will respect different opinions and will move forward in the manner that I believe the people who sent us here want—engaging constructively with other parties and listening carefully to their ideas. It is, of course, the role of Opposition parties to oppose; equally, I will never shy away from stating the Government’s record and achievements through the steps that we have taken. In our mission to eradicate child poverty, we are lifting an estimated 100,000 children out of poverty. Since 2007, when this Government came to office, gross domestic product per head has grown more quickly in Scotland than it has in the United Kingdom as a whole. Productivity has also grown faster. Through measures such as removing peak rail fares and extending free bus travel to under-22s, we are actively helping with the cost of living as it affects individuals in our society.

In our most precious public service—the national health service—we have the best-performing core accident and emergency units in the United Kingdom. Prescriptions are free, while the cost continues to rise south of the border. Attainment is at a record high, and record numbers of students from deprived backgrounds are going to university. Significant progress has also been made in tackling the climate emergency, but we know that more needs to be done on climate change and other policy areas.

With my new ministerial team, we will work for every hour of every day to tackle the challenges head on and to build a better Scotland.

Before I turn to today’s appointments, I pay tribute to the ministers who are leaving the Government today. Joe FitzPatrick has been a hard-working Minister for Local Government Empowerment and Planning, leading on the Scottish Government’s relationship with our partners in local government and driving forward our ambition to improve the efficiency of the planning system.

Emma Roddick has served well as Minister for Equalities, Migration and Refugees. She has worked hard to build a better Scotland for minority groups and refugees.

George Adam has been a tireless Minister for Parliamentary Business. His role of liaising with other parties has always been performed with good humour and professionalism, and he has been integral to the structuring of constructive relationships between the Scottish National Party and the Green Party in the course of our partnership agreement.

I thank each of those ministers for their service to the Scottish Government.

I also pay tribute to the departing First Minister, who left office on Tuesday. I look forward to Humza Yousaf’s wise counsel from the back benches, as well as his enthusiastic applause for all that I will say. All those departing the Government leave with my sincere thanks and, I am sure, the best wishes of the whole parliamentary chamber.

The team that I have assembled represents the most talented and capable public servants that the Scottish National Party Government wishes to offer to the people of Scotland and to this Parliament.

First, I am delighted that Kate Forbes has accepted the role of Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for the Economy and for the Gaelic language and Scotland’s languages. Kate Forbes has made a significant contribution to this parliamentary chamber, and her daughter appears to be making a significant contribution from the public gallery, as well. [Laughter.]

Kate Forbes is held in extremely high regard in Scotland’s business community and has a strong track record of championing issues that relate to the success of the Scottish economy. Indeed, this morning, she has been engaged in detailed discussions with the business community on the priorities that the Government will take forward.

As Scotland continues to be buffeted by the effects of Westminster austerity and Brexit, it is more important than ever that we use every lever at our disposal to harness Scotland’s economic strengths. Kate Forbes will play a key role in driving forward that agenda. In doing so, she will ensure that we deliver growth for a purpose. It must be growth that is sustainable, that benefits everyone and that improves our public services.

Kate Forbes will take on responsibility for Scotland’s languages, including one of Scotland’s most cherished assets—the Gaelic language. I look forward to demonstrating our support for the Gaelic language when I attend the parliamentary reception this evening to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, the Gaelic college in Skye, in the Deputy First Minister’s constituency.

I am pleased that Ivan McKee returns to the Government. With his significant professional and political experience, he will make a formidable Minister for Public Finance, in a role that requires forensic attention to detail.

Alongside Kate Forbes’s and Ivan McKee’s appointments, there are some other changes in the ministerial team. Kaukab Stewart becomes Minister for Equalities, an issue on which she has campaigned her entire adult life.

Jamie Hepburn becomes the new Minister for Parliamentary Business. I know that he has warm relationships with MSPs from across the political spectrum. Combined with his political abilities, that means that there is no one better suited to that key role—a role that is even more important with a minority Government—and he will report directly to me, in recognition of the significance of parliamentary relationships.

Angus Robertson will take forward our work across culture, external affairs and the constitution.

Christina McKelvie, in her role as Minister for Drugs and Alcohol Policy, will now report directly to the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, ensuring the closest possible working with our other public health priorities.

Tom Arthur, who has been a highly effective public finance minister, will become the new Minister for Employment and Investment.

I pay particular tribute to the former Deputy First Minister, my friend Shona Robison. In stepping back as Deputy First Minister as I form a Government, Shona Robison has displayed the typical selflessness and team spirit that she has demonstrated throughout her many years in government. Nobody, except those who have served as finance secretary, understands the extraordinary effort that is required to steer a budget through the Parliament, and I am therefore delighted that Shona Robison has accepted my invitation to continue as finance secretary, which is a role that she has accomplished with tremendous success.

A number of ministers remain in post. They are the best people for their roles, and they will work closely with their new colleagues.

I finish by pledging to the people of Scotland what they can expect from my ministerial team. The aim of my Government will be to help people and their families to get on in life, to live happier and healthier lives, to feel secure and, with that security, to feel a sense of possibility and opportunity. That ambition should be for not just a minority or even a majority of people but for everyone, which is why the goal of eradicating child poverty is so close to my heart and will be central to the direction of my Government.

We promise to do everything that we can to help Scotland’s business community not just to survive these difficult times but to thrive.

On constitutional change, everyone in the chamber should remember that there is a majority in this Parliament for independence. That is the result of a democratic choice that was made by the people of Scotland. I know that some Opposition members might not like that choice, but, frankly, it is odd that some so often disregard that choice. More than that, it is disrespectful to the people who put us here to disregard that choice. Perhaps this new chapter in our democracy will bring some reflection on that important point.

Those of us who believe in independence do so because we believe that, with the powers of a normal independent country, we can collectively, as a nation, build a wealthier and fairer country. Therefore, we will continue to make the case—in line with the mandate that we have received—for the powers that we need to make the most of the talents of all our people.

We will do everything that we can within our current powers. We will engage with and listen to Scotland’s people, our civic organisations and our businesses, and we will work with members of the Scottish Parliament across the chamber to deliver a better Scotland, to drive sustainable economic growth, to deliver better public services and to eradicate once and for all the curse of child poverty.

For me, all those things are interlinked. Public services can be properly funded only when we have a strong economy, and the economy can be strong only when every citizen is reaching their full potential. A fairer economy is the bedrock of a healthier and happier population. I and my ministerial team will focus on all those efforts in the service of the people of Scotland.

I move,

That the Parliament agrees that Kate Forbes be appointed as a Scottish Minister.

That the Parliament agrees that Ivan McKee be appointed as a junior Scottish Minister.

14:12  

Meghan Gallacher (Central Scotland) (Con)

We were promised fresh leadership by John Swinney, but all that we got from his much-talked-up Cabinet reshuffle was Humza Yousaf’s Cabinet with a different figurehead. They could not even be bothered to shuffle around the portfolios in any major way.

We were promised that there would be a streamlined Cabinet with fewer people in it. Instead, the Cabinet is even larger than it was under John Swinney’s predecessor, which will cost taxpayers tens of thousands of pounds more. The First Minister promised us that he would reach out to other parties and deliver a new style of politics. However, as we saw at First Minister’s question time, the Scottish National Party Government will continue to deflect and obfuscate instead of being up front and honest. For all that John Swinney talks about leading a new or revitalised Government, the past couple of days have shown that it remains the same old SNP Government that Scotland has suffered under for the past 17 years.

Although the Government has remained the same, the Parliament has changed. The SNP no longer commands a majority in the Parliament. It has ended its deal with the Greens. Although we welcomed the ending of the Bute house agreement, that has consequences for the Government. The SNP must now change its approach and reach out. It must build consensus and collaborate, otherwise it will be blocked from taking forward its agenda. That is why we will not support the Government’s appointments today. That we will not do so is not a personal criticism of any of the individuals who are up for approval today. Instead, we are putting down a marker that the Government must change its approach.

The Scottish Conservatives will take every opportunity to oppose the SNP Government and its obsession with independence. However, that does not mean that we are above working with other parties in the Parliament to deliver on the real priorities of the Scottish people. It is now a Parliament of minorities, and the SNP must recognise that.

14:14  

Martin Whitfield (South Scotland) (Lab)

On behalf of Scottish Labour, I welcome colleagues who are new to their roles in Government and thank those who are leaving office for their time in public service.

However, the announcement of this continuity Cabinet is just another example of the SNP putting its own party interests before those of the country. We recognise that the ministers who will be appointed today will be charged with both responsibility and opportunity, which I hope they will grasp, but I fear that this Government lacks the ambition to work in Scotland’s best interests.

After 17 years of failure, every single institution in Scotland is weaker, and those who are responsible for that remain at the heart of Government. Our NHS is in chaos, with one in six Scots on a waiting list. Our economy is stalling, with slow growth and low pay persisting. Our schools face deep cuts in teacher numbers while the rate of violence in classrooms soars and the attainment gap persists.

Now, more than ever, Scotland needs a Government that has fresh ideas and will focus on the task at hand, but all we have is a continuity Cabinet that cannot be trusted to fix the chaos and instability that it created. We need a Government that can rise to the crisis in our public services but, today, we have been offered just more of the same. This is the same SNP Government that has delivered a record of failure across our public services and, although the Cabinet reshuffle has been a perfect example of the First Minister putting the management of the SNP before the interests of the country, it is clear elsewhere just how much the SNP has downgraded its ambitions for Scotland.

As the Government axes the NHS recovery minister, waiting lists are longer, not shorter, with more than 820,000 Scots stuck on those lists. While the Government abolishes its planning minister, homelessness hits record levels, with 10,000 children living in temporary accommodation. As thousands of businesses go to the wall and this Government squanders the opportunities of a green transition, ministers for the just transition, fair work, innovation and trade have all been scrapped.

After 17 years of failure, this reshuffle is confirmation of what many Scots have felt for years: ambition has been downgraded, public services have been abandoned and the most vulnerable are being asked to pay the price for SNP chaos and incompetence. The most vulnerable in our society are now being forced to pick up the tab for those SNP failures. The public do not believe that continuity will cut it but, for this Government, that seems to be the highest ambition.

Now, more than ever, our country needs credible and effective leadership. People need a Government that is on their side and that focuses on creating jobs and lowering bills. They need a Government that will renew and repair our NHS, putting patients and staff first—a Government that will invest in Scotland’s potential and build a better nation.

Although I genuinely wish all the ministers who are appointed today well, I fear that the task ahead is beyond them. Scotland is crying out for change and it is clear that a tired Government cannot deliver that.

14:18  

Ross Greer (West Scotland) (Green)

I begin by thanking George Adam, Joe FitzPatrick and Emma Roddick for their contributions to Government. It was a privilege to work with them through the Bute house agreement and they are all champions of a fairer and more equal Scotland.

The act that established this Parliament gives the First Minister the responsibility of nominating those he wishes to serve as Scottish ministers and gives Parliament the responsibility of deciding on the suitability of those candidates. John Swinney knows that I hold him in esteem, but today he is asking me and other LGBT members of this Parliament to appoint to the second-highest office in this country an individual who believes that it was wrong for Parliament to grant us the same legal rights as everyone else 10 years ago. I cannot, and the Scottish Greens cannot, support the appointment of someone who fundamentally does not believe that everyone in Scotland is equal and is worthy of equal rights and respect under the law. We cannot support the appointment of someone who believes not only that equal marriage is wrong but that it is wrong for children to be born outside of marriage. We will therefore oppose the appointment of Kate Forbes as Deputy First Minister.

Presiding Officer,

“I’m a man of deep Christian faith but I do not hold the same views as Kate has set out”.

That statement certainly applies to me, but it was not me who said it—it was John Swinney. Last year, the now First Minister said that Kate Forbes was entitled to her views, but that others are

“entitled to decide if someone who holds those views would be an appropriate individual to be ... first minister.”

As Mr Swinney said then, this is not about whether a person holds a particular faith.

My belief in the good news brought by Jesus Christ is something that I share with Mr Swinney and Ms Forbes and, in that, we share something far more important than party affiliation or political ideology. Faith is not the issue here. The issue is that I am being asked to vote for someone who thinks that there is something wrong with me, not because of any views that I hold but simply because of who I am. I will not do that, and the Scottish Greens will not do that. Yesterday, Kate Forbes was given the opportunity to reassure LGBT people in a question asked by ITV News. She did not do so. The First Minister had to step in just to say the word “LGBT”.

This month, we celebrate 25 years of this Parliament. There is much to celebrate, especially in all the ways in which Scotland has become a more equal place as a result of devolution, but in the past few years it has felt for the first time like we are going backwards. Scotland is in many ways a harder place to be LGBT today than it was five years ago. My lapel pin was given to me by the Time for Inclusive Education campaign. Its work delivered LGBTQ-inclusive education in our schools. It is a sad reflection of where Scottish politics is now that, if the TIE campaign was launched today rather than a decade ago, I do not think that it would succeed.

The existence of LGBTQ people, especially queer young people, has been called into question in a way that many of us hoped had been consigned to history. I say to the First Minister that many LGBTQ Scots are afraid today. I know that that is not his intention and it is certainly not Kate Forbes’s intention, but it is the reality. It was the reality before Kate Forbes’s nomination for Deputy First Minister, but the First Minister must acknowledge that the nomination has heightened that fear. If he does not wish to hear it from me, he could listen to the many LGBTQ members of the Scottish National Party who expressed their fear and alarm yesterday.

Before I close, I want to address those who have highlighted that the Scottish Greens have worked with Kate Forbes previously. That is true. There are issues that we progressed together that I am proud of, such as the agreement to begin trials of a four-day working week in the public sector. That was all before the SNP leadership election last year, in which those deeply hurtful positions were made known. It would have been wrong to presume Kate Forbes’s views simply because of the church that she is a member of. Ian Blackford is a fine example of a Free Church member and an elected representative who played a key role in advancing equal marriage rights across these islands. He also supported John Swinney last year when he questioned Ms Forbes’s suitability for high office. There is not a credible argument for someone being an unsuitable First Minister but a perfectly suitable deputy.

I know that John Swinney considers me and all LGBT members of this Parliament to be equal. I know that he shares in the joy that is felt by every LGBT person in Scotland who has used the marriage right that this Parliament gave them, including members of this Parliament. Today, however, the First Minister is asking us to appoint as his deputy someone who does not share in that joy, who does not think that we are deserving of equality under the law, and who thinks that there is something wrong with us. I cannot do that and the Scottish Greens cannot do that, but I want to hear him tell me why I should.

14:22  

Willie Rennie (North East Fife) (LD)

The First Minister is trying to adopt a new approach. He will forgive me for being a little bit sceptical, because we have been here before, but we want to try to meet him on those terms. We will start that today and we will not block the appointment of Kate Forbes. We may have a difference of views on equalities, but Kate Forbes deserves a chance to govern, putting those views to one side.

If the First Minister does not mind, I have some advice on the developing of relationships across the chamber. I do not expect him to stop believing in independence, but he must realise that the more that he uses his position and that of the Government to push independence, the more difficult it is for us to reach across that constitutional divide to work in partnership.

My second piece of advice is to get out of the comfort zone and, at least in the first instance, try a bit harder to answer the question properly—if not for MSPs, then for the public. When people are suffering, they generally do not want to hear that we are better than Westminster or even Wales.

Thirdly, I ask him to please stop saying that ministers are considering a proposal when it is patently obvious that they are not. I have an example that is very close to home and which has affected me deeply. The flood victims in Cupar feel insulted that they have been strung along with the possibility of financial support similar to that which was received in Angus. I trusted ministers when they told me that they were seriously considering that. It will take a lot to convince me again.

I want to get things done for my constituents. Liberal Democrats have crossed the constitutional divide before, on the budget in 2021, on other budgets and, more recently, on the Children (Care and Justice) (Scotland) Bill. If getting things done means working with ministers, we will do just that.

I hope that Emma Roddick, Joe FitzPatrick and George Adam look back on their time in office with a sense of pride. Nevertheless, it must be difficult to return to the back benches—but at least we will have more speeches about the great city of Paisley to look forward to, once again.

I hope that members will permit me some personal satisfaction that Jamie Hepburn is free. He has been released from that heavy burden of churning out those dreaded independence papers in the bowels of St Andrew’s house. I say: solidarity with the Cumbernauld one. [Laughter.] Look at him—the smile on his face is a joy to behold. He is climbing the ministerial ladder, as I had planned. My campaign has been so successful that I am beginning to wonder whether I am pulling the strings of our new First Minister.

I yield to no one in my great admiration for Jamie Hepburn, but I must admit that I am slightly nervous that he is to move from the position of great divider, as the Minister for Independence, to great healer, as the Minister for Parliamentary Business. I am sure that we all look forward to his joint peace-building initiative, bringing together the likes of Stephen Kerr, Fergus Ewing, Jackie Baillie and Patrick Harvie. I wish him well.

14:26  

The First Minister

I will not respond to all the points that have been made in the chamber, but I will respond to a number of them, because they are serious and important points that have been made by all colleagues. I embark on my term as First Minister with a genuine desire for this institution to work more collaboratively than it currently does. I accept—and have accepted publicly—that, today, our politics are polarised and that there has to be effective leadership to improve that situation. That is very much at the heart of some of the comments that Meghan Gallacher made in her speech. I have pledged to give that leadership on behalf of the Scottish Government and to contribute to ensuring that we can arrive at agreements in our Parliament that will improve the lives of people in Scotland and ensure that they can have more confidence about their future in this country, given the enormous pressures and challenges with which people wrestle at the moment.

Martin Whitfield made a number of remarks about the record of the Government. In the speech that I gave in this place when I stood down as Deputy First Minister, I said that I would give some advice to the Opposition, which was that I did not think that it was a particularly strong narrative to say to people that everything in Scotland today is awful. I say so genuinely, because I went through a period in the run-up to the 2003 election, when I was leader of the SNP, of making the argument that everything was absolutely awful, and it did not do us any good electorally. I offer that friendly advice from a sage election winner to Mr Whitfield, with the generosity of spirit for which I will be renowned in the years to come.

On Willie Rennie’s contribution, I welcome the willingness of the Liberal Democrats to enable the appointments to be made today. I recognise the rationale and motivation for doing that—to create some space for us as a Parliament to progress from where we are today to finding areas of agreement and common purpose.

Mr Rennie encouraged me to be a bit more explicit in answering questions. Actually, I was trying to do that at First Minister’s question time today. I may have startled a few people with some of my answers about some of the challenges that we face. Over lunch time, I conceded to the Presiding Officer that those answers were perhaps a bit on the lengthy side of things. I see that the Deputy Presiding Officer is gesticulating to me about the length of the answers. I will do my best.

Mr Rennie makes a substantive point about what can be achieved when there is substantial engagement between members of Parliament. Natalie Don, the Minister for Children, Young People and the Promise, has worked hard with colleagues across the chamber to get the Children (Care and Justice) (Scotland) Bill into a stronger position today than it was when the Government introduced it. I acknowledge that some of that strengthening has been because of the Opposition’s contribution to the debate and the Government making a response that it originally was not prepared to offer. Willie Rennie’s point about how we can find common ground is therefore an important one.

Without disclosing the contents of a private conversation, I advise members that, some months ago, I said to Mr Rennie in the corridor that I had listened to him on the radio and found myself thinking, “He does make a fair point about the flooding issue in Cupar.” Let me take Mr Rennie’s issue away and see what I can do about it, because I did think that he made a fair point. However, if Mr Rennie believes that Jamie Hepburn has been liberated from a heavy burden, I am afraid to tell him that he is wrong on that one—there is a straight answer to that question—because I fear for the burdens that Mr Hepburn will have to carry in the period going forward.

Lastly, I come to Ross Greer’s contribution. He set out what is, understandably, a deeply personal perspective for him, which is shared by his colleagues. I understand that. I think that Ross Greer and his colleagues in the Green Party know that I respect the issues, considerations and perspectives that they have. What I was trying to say to Patrick Harvie in my response to his question at First Minister’s question time earlier is that the country that I lead today has a modern, diverse and dynamic society. I recognise that, as do all the members of my Government. We want to keep it that way, so that is what we are committed to doing. We want to ensure that the values of diversity that have been at the heart of this Parliament’s journey over so many years are protected and enhanced as our country moves forward together.

When I say to the country—as I did on Tuesday, standing here—that I offer myself as the First Minister for everybody in Scotland, I cannot convey adequately or strongly enough that I mean absolutely everybody. I want each and every person in our society to feel that they are at home and at peace. I come to those conclusions from some of the motivations that Mr Greer has talked about—from a very deep Christian faith. I believe that nothing can separate us from the love of God. That is the foundation of who I am. Nothing can separate us from the love of God; we are equal in the eyes of God, every one of us.

I hope that those comments, which are more forthright ones about faith than I have ever uttered in my 45 years in politics, will perhaps illustrate to Parliament the magnitude of the seriousness with which I take the issues that Mr Greer put to me and also the seriousness with which I embark on my office as First Minister. I want to ensure that the Government that I lead, and the participation of all my colleagues in it, is undertaken in a fashion that ensures that everybody in Scotland feels that their Government is with them, protecting them, assuring them and making them feel safe, and will always be on their side. That is what I offer the people of Scotland when I say that I will be the First Minister for everybody in our country.

The Presiding Officer

That concludes the debate on the appointment of a Scottish minister and a junior Scottish minister.

There are two questions to be put as a result of the debate. The first question is, that motion S6M-13154, in the name of John Swinney, on appointment of a Scottish minister, be agreed to. Are we agreed?

Members: No.

The Presiding Officer

There will be a division. There will be a short suspension to allow members to access the digital voting system.

14:34 Meeting suspended.  

14:39 On resuming—  

The Presiding Officer

We come to the vote on motion S6M-13154, in the name of John Swinney, on appointment of a Scottish minister. Members should cast their votes now.

For

Adam, George (Paisley) (SNP)
Adam, Karen (Banffshire and Buchan Coast) (SNP)
Adamson, Clare (Motherwell and Wishaw) (SNP)
Allan, Alasdair (Na h-Eileanan an Iar) (SNP)
Arthur, Tom (Renfrewshire South) (SNP)
Beattie, Colin (Midlothian North and Musselburgh) (SNP)
Brown, Keith (Clackmannanshire and Dunblane) (SNP)
Brown, Siobhian (Ayr) (SNP)
Callaghan, Stephanie (Uddingston and Bellshill) (SNP)
Coffey, Willie (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley) (SNP)
Constance, Angela (Almond Valley) (SNP)
Dey, Graeme (Angus South) (SNP)
Don, Natalie (Renfrewshire North and West) (SNP)
Doris, Bob (Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn) (SNP)
Dornan, James (Glasgow Cathcart) (SNP)
Dunbar, Jackie (Aberdeen Donside) (SNP)
Ewing, Annabelle (Cowdenbeath) (SNP)
Ewing, Fergus (Inverness and Nairn) (SNP)
Fairlie, Jim (Perthshire South and Kinross-shire) (SNP)
FitzPatrick, Joe (Dundee City West) (SNP)
Forbes, Kate (Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch) (SNP)
Gibson, Kenneth (Cunninghame North) (SNP)
Gilruth, Jenny (Mid Fife and Glenrothes) (SNP)
Gougeon, Mairi (Angus North and Mearns) (SNP)
Grahame, Christine (Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale) (SNP)
Gray, Neil (Airdrie and Shotts) (SNP)
Harper, Emma (South Scotland) (SNP)
Haughey, Clare (Rutherglen) (SNP)
Hepburn, Jamie (Cumbernauld and Kilsyth) (SNP)
Hyslop, Fiona (Linlithgow) (SNP)
Kidd, Bill (Glasgow Anniesland) (SNP)
MacDonald, Gordon (Edinburgh Pentlands) (SNP)
MacGregor, Fulton (Coatbridge and Chryston) (SNP)
Mackay, Rona (Strathkelvin and Bearsden) (SNP)
Macpherson, Ben (Edinburgh Northern and Leith) (SNP)
Maguire, Ruth (Cunninghame South) (SNP)
Martin, Gillian (Aberdeenshire East) (SNP)
Mason, John (Glasgow Shettleston) (SNP)
Matheson, Michael (Falkirk West) (SNP)
McAllan, Màiri (Clydesdale) (SNP)
McKee, Ivan (Glasgow Provan) (SNP)
McKelvie, Christina (Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse) (SNP)
McLennan, Paul (East Lothian) (SNP)
McMillan, Stuart (Greenock and Inverclyde) (SNP)
McNair, Marie (Clydebank and Milngavie) (SNP)
Minto, Jenni (Argyll and Bute) (SNP)
Nicoll, Audrey (Aberdeen South and North Kincardine) (SNP)
Regan, Ash (Edinburgh Eastern) (Alba)
Robertson, Angus (Edinburgh Central) (SNP)
Robison, Shona (Dundee City East) (SNP)
Roddick, Emma (Highlands and Islands) (SNP)
Somerville, Shirley-Anne (Dunfermline) (SNP)
Stevenson, Collette (East Kilbride) (SNP)
Stewart, Kaukab (Glasgow Kelvin) (SNP)
Stewart, Kevin (Aberdeen Central) (SNP)
Sturgeon, Nicola (Glasgow Southside) (SNP)
Swinney, John (Perthshire North) (SNP)
Thomson, Michelle (Falkirk East) (SNP)
Todd, Maree (Caithness, Sutherland and Ross) (SNP)
Torrance, David (Kirkcaldy) (SNP)
Tweed, Evelyn (Stirling) (SNP)
Whitham, Elena (Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley) (SNP)
Yousaf, Humza (Glasgow Pollok) (SNP)

Against

Baillie, Jackie (Dumbarton) (Lab)
Baker, Claire (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Lab)
Balfour, Jeremy (Lothian) (Con)
Bibby, Neil (West Scotland) (Lab)
Boyack, Sarah (Lothian) (Lab)
Briggs, Miles (Lothian) (Con)
Burgess, Ariane (Highlands and Islands) (Green)
Burnett, Alexander (Aberdeenshire West) (Con)
Carlaw, Jackson (Eastwood) (Con)
Carson, Finlay (Galloway and West Dumfries) (Con)
Chapman, Maggie (North East Scotland) (Green)
Choudhury, Foysol (Lothian) (Lab)
Clark, Katy (West Scotland) (Lab)
Dowey, Sharon (South Scotland) (Con)
Duncan-Glancy, Pam (Glasgow) (Lab)
Eagle, Tim (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Findlay, Russell (West Scotland) (Con)
Fraser, Murdo (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Gallacher, Meghan (Central Scotland) (Con)
Golden, Maurice (North East Scotland) (Con)
Gosal, Pam (West Scotland) (Con)
Grant, Rhoda (Highlands and Islands) (Lab)
Greene, Jamie (West Scotland) (Con)
Greer, Ross (West Scotland) (Green)
Griffin, Mark (Central Scotland) (Lab)
Hamilton, Rachael (Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire) (Con)
Harvie, Patrick (Glasgow) (Green)
Hoy, Craig (South Scotland) (Con)
Johnson, Daniel (Edinburgh Southern) (Lab)
Halcro Johnston, Jamie (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Kerr, Liam (North East Scotland) (Con)
Kerr, Stephen (Central Scotland) (Con)
Lennon, Monica (Central Scotland) (Lab)
Leonard, Richard (Central Scotland) (Lab)
Lumsden, Douglas (North East Scotland) (Con)
Mackay, Gillian (Central Scotland) (Green)
Marra, Michael (North East Scotland) (Lab)
McCall, Roz (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Mochan, Carol (South Scotland) (Lab)
Mountain, Edward (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Mundell, Oliver (Dumfriesshire) (Con)
O’Kane, Paul (West Scotland) (Lab)
Ross, Douglas (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Ruskell, Mark (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Green)
Sarwar, Anas (Glasgow) (Lab)
Simpson, Graham (Central Scotland) (Con)
Slater, Lorna (Lothian) (Green)
Smith, Liz (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Smyth, Colin (South Scotland) (Lab)
Stewart, Alexander (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Sweeney, Paul (Glasgow) (Lab)
Villalba, Mercedes (North East Scotland) (Lab) Proxy vote cast by Richard Leonard
Webber, Sue (Lothian) (Con)
Wells, Annie (Glasgow) (Con)
White, Tess (North East Scotland) (Con)
Whitfield, Martin (South Scotland) (Lab)
Whittle, Brian (South Scotland) (Con)

Abstentions

Cole-Hamilton, Alex (Edinburgh Western) (LD)
McArthur, Liam (Orkney Islands) (LD)
Rennie, Willie (North East Fife) (LD)

The Presiding Officer

The result of the division is: For 63, Against 57, Abstentions 3.

Motion agreed to,

That the Parliament agrees that Kate Forbes be appointed as a Scottish Minister.

The Presiding Officer

The next question is, that motion S6M-13155, in the name of John Swinney, on appointment of a junior Scottish minister, be agreed to. Are we agreed?

Members: No.

There will be a division.

The vote is closed.

On a point of order, Presiding Officer. I would have voted no.

Thank you, Mr Greene. We will ensure that your vote is recorded.

On a point of order, Presiding Officer. I could not connect. I would have voted yes.

The Presiding Officer

Thank you, Mr Brown. We will ensure that your vote is recorded.

For

Adam, George (Paisley) (SNP)
Adam, Karen (Banffshire and Buchan Coast) (SNP)
Adamson, Clare (Motherwell and Wishaw) (SNP)
Allan, Alasdair (Na h-Eileanan an Iar) (SNP)
Arthur, Tom (Renfrewshire South) (SNP)
Beattie, Colin (Midlothian North and Musselburgh) (SNP)
Brown, Keith (Clackmannanshire and Dunblane) (SNP)
Brown, Siobhian (Ayr) (SNP)
Callaghan, Stephanie (Uddingston and Bellshill) (SNP)
Coffey, Willie (Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley) (SNP)
Constance, Angela (Almond Valley) (SNP)
Dey, Graeme (Angus South) (SNP)
Don, Natalie (Renfrewshire North and West) (SNP)
Doris, Bob (Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn) (SNP)
Dornan, James (Glasgow Cathcart) (SNP)
Dunbar, Jackie (Aberdeen Donside) (SNP)
Ewing, Annabelle (Cowdenbeath) (SNP)
Ewing, Fergus (Inverness and Nairn) (SNP)
Fairlie, Jim (Perthshire South and Kinross-shire) (SNP)
FitzPatrick, Joe (Dundee City West) (SNP)
Forbes, Kate (Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch) (SNP)
Gibson, Kenneth (Cunninghame North) (SNP)
Gilruth, Jenny (Mid Fife and Glenrothes) (SNP)
Gougeon, Mairi (Angus North and Mearns) (SNP)
Grahame, Christine (Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale) (SNP)
Gray, Neil (Airdrie and Shotts) (SNP)
Harper, Emma (South Scotland) (SNP)
Haughey, Clare (Rutherglen) (SNP)
Hepburn, Jamie (Cumbernauld and Kilsyth) (SNP)
Hyslop, Fiona (Linlithgow) (SNP)
Kidd, Bill (Glasgow Anniesland) (SNP)
MacDonald, Gordon (Edinburgh Pentlands) (SNP)
MacGregor, Fulton (Coatbridge and Chryston) (SNP)
Mackay, Rona (Strathkelvin and Bearsden) (SNP)
Macpherson, Ben (Edinburgh Northern and Leith) (SNP)
Maguire, Ruth (Cunninghame South) (SNP)
Martin, Gillian (Aberdeenshire East) (SNP)
Mason, John (Glasgow Shettleston) (SNP)
Matheson, Michael (Falkirk West) (SNP)
McAllan, Màiri (Clydesdale) (SNP)
McKee, Ivan (Glasgow Provan) (SNP)
McKelvie, Christina (Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse) (SNP)
McLennan, Paul (East Lothian) (SNP)
McMillan, Stuart (Greenock and Inverclyde) (SNP)
McNair, Marie (Clydebank and Milngavie) (SNP)
Minto, Jenni (Argyll and Bute) (SNP)
Nicoll, Audrey (Aberdeen South and North Kincardine) (SNP)
Regan, Ash (Edinburgh Eastern) (Alba)
Robertson, Angus (Edinburgh Central) (SNP)
Robison, Shona (Dundee City East) (SNP)
Roddick, Emma (Highlands and Islands) (SNP)
Somerville, Shirley-Anne (Dunfermline) (SNP)
Stevenson, Collette (East Kilbride) (SNP)
Stewart, Kaukab (Glasgow Kelvin) (SNP)
Stewart, Kevin (Aberdeen Central) (SNP)
Sturgeon, Nicola (Glasgow Southside) (SNP)
Swinney, John (Perthshire North) (SNP)
Thomson, Michelle (Falkirk East) (SNP)
Todd, Maree (Caithness, Sutherland and Ross) (SNP)
Torrance, David (Kirkcaldy) (SNP)
Tweed, Evelyn (Stirling) (SNP)
Whitham, Elena (Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley) (SNP)
Yousaf, Humza (Glasgow Pollok) (SNP)

Against

Baillie, Jackie (Dumbarton) (Lab)
Baker, Claire (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Lab)
Balfour, Jeremy (Lothian) (Con)
Bibby, Neil (West Scotland) (Lab)
Boyack, Sarah (Lothian) (Lab)
Briggs, Miles (Lothian) (Con)
Burnett, Alexander (Aberdeenshire West) (Con)
Carlaw, Jackson (Eastwood) (Con)
Carson, Finlay (Galloway and West Dumfries) (Con)
Choudhury, Foysol (Lothian) (Lab)
Clark, Katy (West Scotland) (Lab)
Dowey, Sharon (South Scotland) (Con)
Duncan-Glancy, Pam (Glasgow) (Lab)
Eagle, Tim (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Findlay, Russell (West Scotland) (Con)
Fraser, Murdo (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Gallacher, Meghan (Central Scotland) (Con)
Golden, Maurice (North East Scotland) (Con)
Gosal, Pam (West Scotland) (Con)
Grant, Rhoda (Highlands and Islands) (Lab)
Greene, Jamie (West Scotland) (Con)
Griffin, Mark (Central Scotland) (Lab)
Hamilton, Rachael (Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire) (Con)
Hoy, Craig (South Scotland) (Con)
Johnson, Daniel (Edinburgh Southern) (Lab)
Halcro Johnston, Jamie (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Kerr, Liam (North East Scotland) (Con)
Kerr, Stephen (Central Scotland) (Con)
Lennon, Monica (Central Scotland) (Lab)
Leonard, Richard (Central Scotland) (Lab)
Lumsden, Douglas (North East Scotland) (Con)
Marra, Michael (North East Scotland) (Lab)
McCall, Roz (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Mochan, Carol (South Scotland) (Lab)
Mountain, Edward (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Mundell, Oliver (Dumfriesshire) (Con)
O’Kane, Paul (West Scotland) (Lab)
Ross, Douglas (Highlands and Islands) (Con)
Sarwar, Anas (Glasgow) (Lab)
Smith, Liz (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Smyth, Colin (South Scotland) (Lab)
Stewart, Alexander (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Con)
Sweeney, Paul (Glasgow) (Lab)
Villalba, Mercedes (North East Scotland) (Lab) Proxy vote cast by Richard Leonard
Webber, Sue (Lothian) (Con)
Wells, Annie (Glasgow) (Con)
White, Tess (North East Scotland) (Con)
Whitfield, Martin (South Scotland) (Lab)
Whittle, Brian (South Scotland) (Con)

Abstentions

Burgess, Ariane (Highlands and Islands) (Green)
Chapman, Maggie (North East Scotland) (Green)
Cole-Hamilton, Alex (Edinburgh Western) (LD)
Greer, Ross (West Scotland) (Green)
Harvie, Patrick (Glasgow) (Green)
Mackay, Gillian (Central Scotland) (Green)
McArthur, Liam (Orkney Islands) (LD)
Rennie, Willie (North East Fife) (LD)
Ruskell, Mark (Mid Scotland and Fife) (Green)
Slater, Lorna (Lothian) (Green)

The Presiding Officer

The result of the division is: For 63, Against 49, Abstentions 10.

Motion agreed to,

That the Parliament agrees that Ivan McKee be appointed as a junior Scottish Minister.

Before we move to the next item of business, I will allow a moment or two for members on the front benches to reorganise.