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Scottish Elections 2007 1 January 2007

Posted by David in Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats.

I am a strong believer in the 300 year old Union of Scotland, Wales and England. The Kingdom of Great Britain, for all its faults, has been a huge success. As the 300th anniversary of the Act of Union approaches, so too does the new elections to the devolved Scottish Parliament which look set to see the Nationalists win.

UKPollingReport:”There was a new TNS System Three poll in the Sunday Herald yesterday. The constituency vote, with changes from TNS’s last monthly poll, breaks down as CON 11%(-1), LAB 35%(-3), LDEM 14%(nc), SNP 32%(+2), GRN 3%, SSP 4% (though the Greens do not put up candidates at the constituency level, so come the actual election these voters will obviously have to go elsewhere or not vote). Regional support stands at CON 11%(+2), LAB 32%(+2), LDEM 15%(-2), SNP 30%(-3), GRN 5%(nc), SSP 4%(nc).

Another poll in The Scotsmanprojects the SNP winning 43 MSPs, (+16), making it the largest party at Holyrood. Labour would have 38 seats (-12), the Liberal Democrats would have 25 (+8). The Conservatives would have 14 (-4), with the Greens on five (-2), and the others on four (-6). A party needs 65 for a majority.

Under these results, the current but unpopular Labour-LibDem coalition would be just 2 short of a majority. The Greens, Tories or SNP could become kingmakers for them, but would any of these parties want to be seen holding an unpopular party – rejected by voters – in power? The SNP wouldn’t, unless they agreed to a referendum on independence, which could be the end of Gordon Brown. If the Greens or Conservatives did, this would make the SNP seem the only real alternative to Labour coalitions, not a good result for unionists.

Equally, the SNP would be just 22 short of a majority. They work closely with the pro-independence Greens and “others”, and combined would be only 13-17 seats short (depending on the “others”). The LibDems, Tories or Labour could be kingmaker for them, but could they accept the SNP’s demand for a referendum on independence? From what I hear the LibDems have refused, knowing it would damage their English vote. Then could any of these potential partners work with the left wing SNP and possibly the openly ultra-socialist “others”?

My prediction is that there will be a minority SNP-Green-Other government, with the unionist parties letting the nationalists dig themselves into a hole over the next few years. This would greatly discredit the independence movement, and so may well be the best result for unionists.



1. Joe - 10 January 2007

My gut instinct tells me that labour will still be ahead of the SNP overall. I foresee them losing ten constituency seats but regaining Strathkelvin and Bearsden plus an extra top up seat certainly in North East (where they will lose all first past the post seats) and South (where I think they will lose Dumfries) but Possibly in Highlands and Islands as well (to compensate for losing Na’nEileain Iar). This should still leave Labour 44 seats. I suspect the SNP to gain circ 37-38. Salmond has a cat in hells chance of getting in- the SNP will do too well in his region but he won’t take Gordon. I think the Tories will do slightly better than the polls say, maybe hold all existing seats, the Greens should advance a couple of seats and the SSP retain two or three.
As for ‘others’, Canavan and Margo Macdonald should get back. Watch the Scottish Christian candidate in Highlands and Islands as a possible wildcard.
All in all that leaves the LDs and Greens as probable kingmakers. I suspect whatever executive we get will contain them both but whether they crown M’Connell or Nichola Sturgeon (as it will have to be without Alec in the house) will be, as De Valera used to say ‘a matter of tactics not principle’

2. Joe - 2 February 2007

My comments here since my last post are now slightly out of date- Canavan is retiring. That of course helps Labour because of the region. Retaking Falkirk West can’t lose them Top up seats they don’t have. Labour on 45 then.

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