Green with envy

Ash Regan’s first week as an Alba MSP didn’t exactly go swimmingly. Besides failing to take part in her first vote, she has struggled to find a new office at Holyrood. The SNP want her off the third floor of the MSP block, and the Greens don’t want her on the ground floor with them. The latter snub is extra cheeky as the Greens have two spare offices thanks to Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater moving to the ministerial tower. Unspun’s mole says the rooms have since become part of wannabe leader Ross Greer’s mini-empire, and he ain’t for budging.

Elevator shoes

Also having a lousy time was Nicola Sturgeon, her reputation as Scotland’s Florence Nightingale during Covid taking a bashing over deleted WhatsApps. As the press horde waited to pounce outside the ministerial lift on Tuesday, the current FM’s special adviser Jack Middleton had to keep the door open with his feet to ensure ministers could fly past and avoid getting ambushed too. “I’m the best paid doorstop in Scotland,” sighed bellboy Jack. 

Total nightmare

We’re not usually scared of Hallowe’en at Unspun, but then the Scotland Office got involved and now we’re terrified. In a beyond-bonkers social media post this week, it issued a Hallowe'en themed film about the "scary" Fiscal Framework, a tax and spend deal between Edinburgh and London that's as dry as crypt dust. Full of pumpkins, cartoon bats and witches, it began: “Welcome to the fiscal framework. It came from the two governments agreeing to a fiscal framework.” Well, quite. In a ‘spooky’ orange font it then boasted the deal had delivered “Long-term funding clarity!” and “Extra Borrowing Power!”. Bet the kids love that. Oh, and there was a  dog dressed as a ghost. Alister Jack, seriously, are you all right hun?

The Kate Divide

Talking of hauntings, Humza Yousaf’s future usurper Kate Forbes was back in the headlines this week after humble-bragging about keeping all her WhatsApps for the Covid inquiry. Unlike you know who. She also slipped a silky stiletto into the current First Minister by being nice about Alba defector Ash Regan, after he was cheap and nasty about her. “I have a lot of time for her,” Ms Forbes purred. “I think she has served her constituents over that time. And I think she was a good minister in government.” Unlike you know him. 
Pringle thumper

A rare treat for the Holyrood hack pack on Thursday as legendary spin doctor Kevin Pringle stood in for the First Minister’s usual spokesman in the post-FMQs briefing. “He’s on holiday for two weeks, hence me,” Kevin explained. “We’ll suffer you,” growled a grizzled scribbler. “Likewise,” deadpanned KP. He then droned on for 50 minutes to teach the guy a lesson.
Laughter track

This week’s contribution to Late News Corner comes from the Scottish Green conference in Dunfermline last Saturday, where the party was clearly revelling in finally having a taste of power. However old school fretting was never far away. Discussing the Bute House Agreement on governing with the SNP, MSP Maggie Chapman told delegates their input and feedback was crucial. “It really is you in the driver’s seat,” she said, before worrying about using a private transport metaphor. “Are we allowed to say driver’s seat?” she wondered aloud, before hitting on an inspired compromise. “Yes - if it’s a train.”