Scottish Labour’s claim in the first paragraph of its latest paper, to have led the argument for devolution for over 100 years takes a historical liberty. Its unionist and home rule components have fought it out since the 1920s. Devolution in 1999 allowed Labour to take ownership of the issue, but since then it has tended to a defensive posture, conceding further powers reluctantly in the face of SNP competition, and too late to have an impact.
The final report of the Labour Party’s Devolution Commission is now out, ready for presentation and, we presume, approval at the Scottish Labour Conference this weekend. The publication of the report leaves the Conservatives as the only significant pro-union party yet to declare its hand on what further devolution it would consider in the event of a No vote in September.