The Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland QC, has moved to speak up for Scotland’s judges after sources in government appeared to imply they were politically biased.

This morning, the Scottish Court of Session ruled that this week’s prorogation of Parliament by Prime Minister Boris Johnson is unlawful. An appeal begins in the Supreme Court on Tuesday.

The Sun’s political editor Tom Newton Dunn quoted Downing Street sources as saying, “We note that last week the High Court in London did not rule that prorogation was unlawful. The legal activists choose the Scottish courts for a reason”.

On Twitter, many senior legal figures, including former Chancellor Lord Falconer, urged Buckland to either speak up for the judges or resign his Cabinet position. He duly did so, Tweeting that he had “total confidence in their independence in every case.”

Buckland’s position in Cabinet has come under increasing scrutiny as the potential legality of the Prime Minister’s future actions has come into question. On various occasions, government figures have speculated that he might refuse to send a letter to the EU seeking to delay Brexit, in defiance of the bill passed into law this week by Parliament. In a situation where a Prime Minister was intent on ignoring the rule of law, the Lord Chancellor’s position would theoretically become untenable.

Former Lord Chancellor Liz Truss came under fire in 2016 for her slow reaction to come to the defence of judges after a Daily Mail front page dubbed them ‘Enemies of the People’, The headline came after the UK Government was defeated in the landmark Brexit High Court challenge over whether Article 50 could lawfully be triggered without a vote by Parliament.