Mutual suspicion over the Great Repeal

Scottish Parliament Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Nicola Sturgeon fears that not all powers over agriculture and fishing will return to Holyrood after Brexit

Parliamentary exchanges customarily assume a tone, a colour of their own. Perhaps the leitmotif is indignation, authentic or otherwise.

Perhaps it is consensus, when members commonly recognise that they have a task to undertake. Perhaps, again, it is tension, when a significant vote looms. Or joviality, when a respected member is on form, or Christmas is near.

Today, at Holyrood, the emblem was suspicion. In part, this was reflecting the broader atmosphere created by Brexit with its attendant issue, independence. Each party, each leader, wonders what the next step will be from rivals.

In part, that arises from older enmities. Holyrood's two largest parties are now the Scottish National Party, with a long-nurtured policy of independence, and the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party with……well, study the name.

So when those parties are responding to the Great Repeal Bill, it is inevitable that there will be mutual suspicion.

'Power grab'

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Solemnity and steel - but what did it tell us?

Theresa May Image copyright Reuters

There were a few comical moments. OK, one or two. OK, one. That came when the Prime Minister declared that the world needed "liberal democratic" values, as protected by the members of the European Union.

Unaccountably, the House chortled. Tim Farron - who is both Liberal and Democratic, albeit in capitals - smiled benignly. And was that a cheeky wink? It was.

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Holyrood and the great Brexit numbers game

A Scottish Saltire (C) flies between a Union flag (L) and a European Union (EU) flag in front of the Scottish Parliament building in Edinburgh Image copyright Getty Images

Article 50? I'll see your 50 and raise you 30. Section 30, that is. Now, before we get completely lost in an arithmetical jungle, let me explain.

The number 50 refers to the Article in the Treaty of Lisbon which a member state deploys to leave the European Union. The number 30 refers to the section in the Scotland Act 1998 under which further powers may be conferred upon the Scottish Parliament.

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Indyref2 debate kicks off a week of beginnings

debate
Image caption Nicola Sturgeon reopened the Holyrood debate, which was halted after the terror attack at Westminster

Perhaps it was the gravity of the topic. Perhaps it was the reflection that this resumed debate had been postponed last week because of the terror attack on Westminster.

Either way, the debate on an independence referendum at Holyrood was marked, mostly, by a respectful, modest tone.

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A meeting of ministers - but not minds (yet)

Nicola Sturgeon and Theresa May Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Nicola Sturgeon and Theresa May met at a hotel in Glasgow on Monday afternoon

A meeting of ministers. But not yet a meeting of minds. Theresa May has been in Scotland for a series of engagements - including talks with the first minister.

Nicola Sturgeon characterised the discussions as "cordial" but also voiced her frustration that there was no sign of concessions in the direction of a distinct Brexit deal for Scotland.

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FMQS: A return to duty

Nicola Sturgeon Image copyright PA
Image caption Nicola Sturgeon spoke of solidarity with the "wonderful city" of London

After the temporary silence of yesterday, there was an unaccustomed noise in the Holyrood chamber today.

Not just applause - that is standard. But multi-party approbation. Leaders and their colleagues all applauding each other, commending the comments of their rivals.

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An attack on democracy

Police officer Holyrood chamber Image copyright PA
Image caption Several MSPs called for the debate to be suspended out of respect for those affected - but some argued it was "giving in to terrorism"

And so an exercise in democracy - indeed a discourse about competing interpretations of democracy - has been interrupted by an attack upon democracy.

The day had started in decidedly normal fashion. Nicola Sturgeon visited a nursery in Edinburgh to meet happy, smiling children.

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Laying foundations ahead of crucial vote

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Media captionThe clock ticks closer to MSPs backing a bid to ask Westminster to hold a second Scottish independence referendum

There was much fevered talk of manifesto commitments and mandates during Day One of the referendum debate at Holyrood. (Or, more precisely, Day One of the demand for a Section 30 transfer of powers in order to hold such a referendum.)

However, party leaders seemed mostly keen to talk about promises delivered by their rivals - and the attendant mandates. Or their absence.

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SNP conference: Nicola Sturgeon's strategy

Sturgeon Image copyright PA

An intriguing, thoughtful speech from Nicola Sturgeon to close the SNP conference in Aberdeen.

Principally, of course, she laid out the strategy to be pursued with regard to her plan for a further independence referendum.

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Indyref2: What's the next move?

Nicola Sturgeon Image copyright AFP Getty

What to do, eh? What to do? What is the strategy for the first minister to pursue now that the prime minister has said "don't call us, we may call you", with regard to proposals for a referendum on independence.

It would appear evident that there are two related but distinct issues pertinent here:

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