“No, I don't have any objections. If the man is dying, if compassion is part, as it is, of the Scottish administration and the medical authorities then get proof to that effect, then it's a decision for the legal authority. You know, Scotland has always had a great deal of independence of its legal authority, going back many years, so we have to respect that decision. And I do.”
It would appear that there is a wee strain of integrity left in the Labour party - Malcolm Chisholm and John Prescott trumping Iain Gray and Gordon Brown. Makes me think that there might be a few more lurking in the background who would rather see a sense of decency return to their parties than carry on with this horror.
So let's make a little list - a Peter Snow swingometer if you will, and make a few predictions about who agrees with Kenny MacAskill rather than the espoused view of their own party (or thinks that it was a decision for the Minister who took it after considering the evidence and that's how it should be). Remember though - it's just a bit of fun!
Malcolm Chisholm MSP - made his point clear in the chamber.
Lord George Foulkes - listened attentively, nodded, and didn't make comments; not his usual behaviour towards the Scottish Government (his favourite people, really).
Henry McLeish - already stated his position.
John Prescott - made it clear earlier.
Cathy Jamieson MSP - never came forward to ask a question in spite of having been in the position herself.
Frank Doran MP - one-time lawyer, left wing (in current Labour terms), used to run his legal practice in Whitfield in Dundee (not hunting the big money cases, then).
Gavin Strang MP - his politics point to compassion rather than vengeance.
Bill Butler MSP, Marlyn Glenn MSP, Rhoda Grant MSP, Frank McAveety MSP, Cathy Peattie MSP, adn Elaine Smith MSP - their consciences will be hurting.
John Farquhar Munro MSP - already declared
Mike Rumbles MSP - I think he said so on Radio Scotland?
Hugh O'Donnell MSP - seems inclined to mercy.
Ming Campbell MP - has already said so.
Lord David Steel - has already said so.
Lord David Owen - has already said so.
Charles Kennedy MP - he's a liberal as well as a Lib Dem (they don't always go together), surely he backs MacAskill?
Iain Smith MSP - I just think so.
Jamie Stone MSP - it may seem cheesy, but I think Jamie Stone is strong and mature enough to not go blue and get smoked ...
Ted Brocklebank MSP - he seems to be to be a compassionate and libertarian kind of guy.
Derek Brownlee MSP - he's sensible enough.
Alex Johnstone MSP - a fair-minded chiel.
Struan Stevenson MEP - surely he would?
Jamie McGrigor MSP - he's a chap who looks on others with a kindly eye.
John Scott MSP - the kind of guy who would agree but wouldn't like to upset his party colleagues either. I think he'd be compassionate.
I think I'm right in saying that the Greens, as a party, support the compassionate release and would like an inquiry, so they really shouldn't be here but it didn't seem fair to mention the other parties and not give the Greens a nod.
I look forward to being proven right over the next few days - I wonder if any journalist is doing a phone-round?
Mind how you go!