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In the discussion thread: UK Parties: The SNP & Plaid Cymru [View all]

Response to T_i_B (Original post)

Fri Nov 1, 2019, 04:20 AM

20. Like everywhere else in the UK, it's tough to call what may happen in this election.

The SNP are riding high in the Scottish national polls, but given the dynamics, it's hard to predict how that will pan out in terms of seats.

The Tories are missing their figurehead, Ruth Davidson, and have yet to elect a permanent leader in her place. It would have been a very difficult election for her to fight anyway, given her one-time opposition to Brexit and antipathy towards Johnson, and later capitulation on both. Johnson is due to visit some time soon. Some of the party's strategists might prefer him to stay away. He's obviously gunning hard for the SNP, his arch-enemies over Brexit, and pretty rabid on the issue of independence. What may not play so well among the broader electorate are the noises he's made in parliament about stripping Holyrood of certain powers, including taking over the Scottish NHS, which has historically been an independent entity and consistently outperforms the NHS in the rest of the UK.

Labour show no signs of revival. Their MPs at Westminster have been unimpressive, and their Scottish branch leader, Richard Leonard, is a charisma vacuum with no power over policy. Corbyn is likely to visit a few times to rally the troops, but he'd better hope that his nasty habit of misstating (from ignorance or calculation) what issues the SNP government has control over, as opposed to those reserved to Westminster, isn't called out by the media. The Labour manifesto pledges numerous measures the Scottish Government has already enacted. The party's also strapped for cash and activists, to the extent that its Shadow Scottish Secretary recently had to enlist friends and relatives to sort out and deliver leaflets in her own constituency.

The Lib Dems have ambitious plans to "win back their heartland". One target is SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford's seat of Ross, Skye and Lochaber (once held by Charles Kennedy), and there are signs of an informal electoral pact with the Tories and Labour to bring about a decapitation strike similar to those that saw off both Salmond and Westminster leader Angus Robertson in the last election. Similar moves are no doubt afoot in other constituencies. Jo Swinson's seat of East Dunbartonshire is an obvious SNP target, and she'll need to show her face in her constituency more than she has in recent times if she's to hold it, unless she's going to rely on Tory tactical anti-SNP votes again. Here's one of the mystifying leaflets the Lib Dems are currently putting out in various constituencies:

The Greens are being selective about which seats they're running in. They're effectively in coalition with the SNP in Holyrood, though often fractious partners. There's no seat where they have any prospect of winning, and they're short of funds.

The Brexit Party have no prominent presence, so it's hard to predict where they'll stand, though they're unlikely to make a significant impact anywhere.

The fracture lines in Scotland are pro-/anti-independence (the latest polls show about even support for each) and pro-/anti-leaving the EU (Scotland voted 60+% Remain). The latter doesn't split neatly along party lines. Unionists are likely to vote tactically on independence, but their choices are complicated by Brexit. The Lib Dems, for instance, are staunchly unionist but strongly anti-Leave, which may present some Tory switchers with a difficult choice.

All this makes the results even harder to call than the previous election. The SNP are polling well ahead of the other parties in Scotland, but how that translates to seats is anybody's guess. Rash predictions of a Tory wipeout or a repeat of the SNP's unheard-of 56 out of 59 seats in the 2015 election are unlikely to pan out, and there's no complacency in the SNP's ranks.

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Arrow 20 replies Author Time Post
T_i_B Apr 2015 OP
Ghost Dog Apr 2015 #1
T_i_B Apr 2015 #2
Denzil_DC Apr 2015 #3
T_i_B Apr 2015 #4
Denzil_DC Apr 2015 #5
T_i_B Apr 2015 #11
Denzil_DC Apr 2015 #13
LeftishBrit Apr 2015 #6
muriel_volestrangler Apr 2015 #7
Denzil_DC Apr 2015 #8
LeftishBrit Apr 2015 #12
MisterP Apr 2015 #9
Denzil_DC Apr 2015 #10
T_i_B Apr 2017 #14
Denzil_DC Apr 2017 #15
T_i_B Apr 2017 #16
Denzil_DC Apr 2017 #17
T_i_B Apr 2017 #18
T_i_B Oct 2019 #19
LineNew Reply Like everywhere else in the UK, it's tough to call what may happen in this election.
Denzil_DC Nov 2019 #20
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