RUTH Davidson was met with shouts of “shame, shame, shame” from MSPs as she refused to criticise the tax credit rape clause.

Nicola Sturgeon challenged the Scottish Conservative leader to state her opposition to the policy during an exchange at First Minister’s Questions.

Ms Sturgeon challenged Ms Davidson. She said: “Tell Scotland straight, do you support the rape clause in principle or do you, like me, think it is utterly abhorrent?”

Ms Sturgeon was applauded by SNP many Labour MSPs, including leader Kezia Dugdale.

Ms Davidson refused to answer the question, instead she said: “I will answer the question in the same way that I answered it in the press this morning. If the First Minister doesn’t like the two-child tax policy, she can change it.”

She was met with shouts of “shame, shame shame” by SNP back bench MSPs.

Ms Sturgeon then went on the attack.

She said “shame on Ruth Davidson, shame on the Conservatives.”

Ms Sturgeon added: “We have just seen in this chamber the true colours of Ruth Davidson and the Conservatives.

“Given the opportunity to stand up clearly and join others in this chamber and say the rape clause - a clause that forces a woman to prove she has been raped before claiming benefits for her child - is morally and in principle wrong, Ruth Davidson refuses to do so.”

Outside Holyrood MSPs joined campaigners protesting against the two child tax credits cap and the rape clause.

SNP, Labour, Green and LibDem MSPs gathered to oppose the policy which came into force earlier this month.

They were joined by Alison Thewliss, Glasgow Central SNP MP who has been campaigning at Westminster to scrap the policy.

JAckson Carlaw, Conservative deputy leader had earlier said there was a lot of “misinformation” surrounding the rape clause and there was no need to fill out a form.

Ms Thewliss said it is the Conservatives who were misleading the public.

she said: “It’s simply not true to say that women aren’t required to fill out a rape clause form – HMRC’s own website says as much. This is a deeply harmful Tory attack on families and women, not a form filling exercise - the Tories are trying to pull the wool over voter’s eyes.”

Kezia Dugdale, said: “This demonstration sends a loud message to Ruth Davidson and Theresa May – scrap the rape clause.

“This shameful and abhorrent policy must go. When people claim that Ruth Davidson is a different kind of Tory, we now know that is not the case. She is just as bad as all the other right wing Tories who want to force rape victims to fill out a form so they can get support from the government.”