Airdrie and Coatbridge Advertiser
I’m afraid that there was an inaccuracy in Ralph Barkers letter of 1st April. I did not use the phrase “happy clappers” to describe the bussed in SNP supporters at the secret public meeting held by Alex Neil in Plains. The man who did use the phrase was standing in front of me, so this may have caused some confusion. I’m not one to take credit for others efforts, and while I agree with the sentiment and laughed along with Mr Barker, sadly it wasn’t me who said it. I feel I must also answer a point raised by Mr Barker about why my letter attacked Ms Nash in relation to the Plains railway station when she is a Westminster MP who has no responsibility over transport. As an opposition MP she of course has no responsibility over anything. As our MP she could have worked to raise the issue wherever possible, maintain its profile and possibly broker a solution. She didn’t. She claimed at the meeting that she was “someone who has campaigned on this for a long time” when in actual fact she has happily used it as a stick to beat Alex Neil with on rare occasions. Over the last few years she has written the grand total of zero letters to North Lanarkshire Council on the subject, she has not raised the subject at all in Parliament, a Freedom of Information request to Network Rail is about to reveal her inactivity on that front and there is a solitary mention of it on her website, dating from four years ago. She has no responsibility over the NHS either, but has started a petition about the out-of-hours GP service and has commented on the NHS regularly, but has been silent on Plains Railway Station, proving she could have done something and didn’t. My own suspicion is that Ms Nash only became available for the meeting when she heard that Alex Neil wouldn’t be attending, and couldn’t resist the chance of a free hit in the run up to an election. Ms Nash is thoroughly deserving of all the criticism that comes her way over this, as she tried to paint herself as a campaigner on this issue when she is nothing of the sort. The facts tell us the truth, unlike Ms Nash who was caught today on BBC Radio Scotland passing off the by now well worn and completely exposed lie that “the biggest party forms the government”. She truly is an awful MP who campaigns tirelessly for her party and herself, but not the people of Airdrie, and Airdrie deserves better than that.