Tory momentum won’t sweep away call for IndyRef2

The results are in and the Local Government outcomes in Scotland, Wales and (much of) England are no great surprise.

Beyond Hadrian’s Wall Labour lost their majority on Glasgow City Council after nearly 40 years dominance. Well over 100 Scottish council seats turned Conservative blue, the majority of which were previously rose-red.

There are two competing Indyref2 narratives in Scotland at the moment. One that the Tory revival is somehow a defeat for the SNP and their call for a second referendum, that Scotland has reached ‘peak-Nat’. The other being that the SNP have again emerged as the largest party and will romp home in the Westminster election next month thereby justifying their call for a second referendum.

We now live in an age where parties either have a clear political message – or they die. In Scotland if you want independence you vote SNP and if you support the union you vote Conservative. If you’re pro-remain you vote SNP if you want Brexit ‘to mean Brexit’ you vote Tory. Scottish Labour are flirting with federalism but it is a position that is in response to the SNP, a reactive policy. They give the public the impression of a political party fumbling about for an identity. And if you are not sure where you stand on independence (never mind Brexit) then how can voters be sure?

Labour are finished in Scotland. It was well on its way to political irrelevance before Jeremy Corbyn became leader.

Whenever the (previously Toxic) Tories can win a seat in Shettleston  and in some of the most deprived places in the country its clear that people are not voting according to the Conservative party position on the redistribution of wealth. They are deciding to cast their ballot on the matter of the Union and/or the European Union.

Theres no doubt that all the momentum is with the Tories across the water at the moment. However it seems that the predicted trouncing of Labour in Wales will not happen at the General Election and that they will remain by far second place to the SNP in Scotland.

A majority of MPs returning to Westminster next month will belong to the SNP. The Scottish Parliament has voted  to again put the constitutional question to the people. When the dust settles after the snap Westminster poll IndyRef2 will still be on the table.

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  • Lex.Butler

    Labour are finished in Scotland? So were the Tories not that long ago. A good positive leader like Ruth Davidson can revive any party.

  • ulidian

    The vote in Wales next month may still be pretty grisly for Labour – all the polling shows a much higher GE vote for the Tories than LE vote.

  • Jeff

    Could not agree more, shame we don’t have someone of her quality articulating the pro union cause in Northern Ireland.

  • mickfealty

    One thing worth noting Daithi is that the outcome in local councils over Scotland is no overall control. I would not ignore that.

    I’m certainly not one for the oul ‘futuring’ but I do think this new political ambivalence in Scotland is going to get rather tricky down the line.

  • Robin Keogh

    Does anybody happen to know what the turnout was in Scotland and what was the % share of the popular vote across all parties?

  • Fear Éireannach

    I imagine that the turnout would be lower in the local elections and that older Tory voters might be more inclined to turn out.

  • Dan

    Heartening to see the first cracks in the walls of the dam, as the Scottish electorate begin to see that, beyond the anti-English sentiment, there’s nothing but failure attached to the politics of nasty nationalists.

  • Nevin
  • hollandia

    I see this more as the “ulsterisation” of Scotland, i.e. The settling of the electorate into two diametrically opposed blocs as regards the status of the union. Labour need to decide where they stand.

  • the rich get richer

    Brexit is far more popular than a lot of people thought……

    Its great to see an out of touch elite in Brussels and Westminster kicked hard in the goolies ( even the females )

    Hopefully Politicians will get the message and at least attempt to see how the people really think…..

  • hgreen

    It suits the SNP to make every election about independence as it suits the Tories to make this election about Brexit. Once independence is achieved socialist parties will return to their position of dominance in Scotland.

  • hgreen

    For a party that is completely finished with a leader that is supposedly awful people don’t half spend a lot of time talking about it.

    It may take a while but eventually Labour will get elected and have to stitch the UK public services back together again.

  • hgreen

    Ruth Davidson is a joke. She’s being used as a patsy by the Tories.

  • hgreen

    Sad if true considering what the party of Thatcher did to the Welsh mining communities. The Welsh sadly are becoming England’s puppet.

  • Daithí McKay

    Have tried to track these down with little success. Strange given that first pref graphs are common in media in other elections.

  • Mark Petticrew

    I came across this earlier, though it’s not official. Hopefully find out sooner rather than later whether there’s any truth to them or not.
    https://twitter.com/orangemen4indy/status/860620761089945601

  • leoinlisbon

    People talking about SLAB is a clear example of schadenfreude. Lots of people rejoice to see the mighty fallen, when the mighty are seen as arrogant and corrupt.
    Labour might make a comeback but it is worth noting that it took the Tories two decades to achieve a partial comeback.
    When a party shrinks, its talent pool shrinks and a death spiral becomes as likely as a revival.

  • Robin Keogh

    I was expecting a higher share for the conservatives.

  • Lex.Butler

    Worth reading this from http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/archives/9861- one of the polls predicting a Welsh labour rout was based on 40 responses. Maybe not quite so bad – although the problem again remains the huge Welsh UKIP vote (about 13%) most of which will go Tory.

  • mickfealty

    Tories have made it about not having an IndyRef2. Which seems to be working very well for them, and rScottishLabour if Edinburgh is anything to go by.

    Lot of talk by SNP and Scottish Greens about wiping Labour out in Edinburgh South may prove to be disappointing for them.

  • Obelisk

    The Tory revival has come about because Ruth Davidson saw an opening for an unashamedly pro-Brexit, pro-Unionist party that has nailed it’s red, white and blue colours to the masthead and which presents itself as THE party for Unionist voters in Scotland who value the British identity.

    Labour on the other hand is in a tussle on the left wing of the spectrum, always dominant in Scotland, with a party that was pro-Remain and has a strong sense of pride in their own Scottish Nationalism.

    On the two great issues of the day, the Tories and SNP have been painting in primary colours to appeal to the electorate.

    Labour does not, not because they want to present a nuanced position but because their positions are out of touch and out of date. I mean Federalism? Federalism is the solution they should have gone for twenty years ago. Even now it would just delay Independence rather than kill it in the cradle, and the SNP is more interested now in the real thing that a wan approximation.
    And Labour seems to have no idea what to do about Brexit except follow the Tory lead.

    If Labour wants to recover, and there is no cast iron rule that it should, it should begin in England. The center-left there has to figure out a credible narrative and policy pitch that will allow it to win over English voters because until it does that, power is beyond it even if they were to stage a spectacular comeback and win every seat in Scotland.

  • Obelisk

    Pretty much as leoinlisbon says hgreen. Twenty years ago this week Labour achieved a general election result so overwhelming people began to question if the Tories had a future.

    Now we just can’t believe what we are seeing as this formerly titanic force collapses on itself.

    As for Labour putting itself back together, maybe, but there is no iron law that says political parties are only ever down but not out before rising again. Just ask the Liberals.

  • Obelisk

    Brexit is more popular in the idea than the implementation. We don’t know what Brexit is yet. It’s a page upon which anyone can write and so far the only people who have had a turn are ardent leavers talking about free trade, sovereignty and border controls.

    One day we will know what Brexit means. On that day Theresa May will be vindicated, or the beginning of the end of Tory rule in England will be seen. That day is a ways off.

  • Obelisk

    Hollandia is right Dan. This result should actually greatly worry Unionists of all shades. Scotland has become politically detached from the UK mainstream (the UK mainstream is now basically English politics) and the constitutional issue casts a shadow over everything.

    Far from a return to the status quo, each election will now be seen as a border poll. And if you keep asking the question, eventually you’ll get a result you don’t like.

    As with the north, Unionists must win all the time when it matters, Nationalists only have to win once.

  • Obelisk

    Probably a reasonable assumption, it holds true across a lot of our elections.Will be interesting to compare with the upcoming general election.

  • Obelisk

    So if only the Labour party could dissolve the people and ask for a new group of voters instead?

  • Obelisk

    There’s only so much you can do to dress up holding out a begging bowl Jeff.

  • ulidian

    Those look like nothing more than percentages of the total number of seats!

  • Robin Keogh

    Ya, I am baffled as to why there are no percentage figures available

  • ulidian

    You might have to add up the 1st preference votes yourself – I’ve yet to find any tally elsewhere.

  • Jeff

    I think if you investigate you will find Miss Davidson very much her own woman.

  • Jeff

    But nationalists have to answer very many questions before enough people across all communities vote for a UI, not least of these is the ecconomy, I’ve not seen a reasoned, costed analysis of this question and whilst there is no question people in the republic would like to see a UI I’m not convinced that they would vote for one when the extent of the austerity programme that would burden them was explained. It would require a great deal of honesty and I don’t think that northern republicans are prepared to offer that.

  • Jeff

    The SNP have reached their zenith and whilst they will continue to have a significant core of supporters the more they fail on the economy, education etc the majority will continue to value the union, not to mention the close cultural ties that the uk offers them.

  • Obelisk

    http://prcg.com/modeling-irish-unification/report.pdf

    And before you ask I didn’t read it myself. Had to rely on summaries posted by journalists.

    The basic conclusion is that reunification would be costly in the short term but in the long term would provide an economic impetus and benefits to both parts of our island.

    At it’s most basic, the economic pitch of reunification should be as follows.

    We are continually told how much Northern Ireland needs a subvention to survive. But Northern Ireland needs a subvention to survive because Northern Ireland is economically non-viable. Northern Ireland is economically non-viable because we are an exclave of another country on this island, and that other country has no interest in our economic development, only in that we don’t cause them any issues. Following reunification, there will be a transition.And the transition period might be a bit crazy, but on the other side of it is integration into an island wide, outward looking liberal economy within the European Union. A country where our votes will contribute between one quarter and one third of the make up of our Parliament, a country where our economic well being is not immaterial to those in charge but an active topic of debate to everyone and anyone in any position of power in the land., a country who will have a vested interest in seeing the former Northern Ireland prosper.
    Yes, it will be scary making that jump, but for Northern Ireland what it has right now is probably as good as it is going to get, a land from which our best our brightest flee, our kids becoming two dimensional via Skype calls. We can be so much more if only we take that first step , a better future rather than endless mediocre present.

    That is how I would pitch it at least. Won’t be up to me when the time comes.

    Reunification will not be a walk in the park. But neither is a vote for endless austerity and suffering. It is a vote to terminate a non-viable economy, to get through it’s integration into a viable one, and then build a better and more prosperous Ireland for all.

  • Jeff

    Thank you for that, regrettably the link will not open, I’ll find it on line and have a good read.

  • hgreen

    Is she really? She comes across as an attention seeker with nothing interesting to say. She ticks a Tory minority box. That is all.

  • Jeff

    with the best will in the world I don’t think the overwhelming majority of people would agree with your view be they for or against her.

  • hgreen

    And it should not be forgotten she’s a Tory and a supporter of one of the nastiest governments this country has ever had. But hey she’s a zany lesbian so we’ll forget about what party she supports.

  • Jeff

    If denigrating her sexuality is as good as you can do I’ll bid you well and leave you to it

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    The relevant votes for the tories ‘great victory’ in Ferguslie Park were as follows:
    SNP = 2000 odd – tories = 660 odd – due to the electoral rules. The tories are still way behind the SNP in Scotland.

    Here are the results:

    2017 Results by largest party in each council:
    SNP = 19 (+10)
    Con = 4 (+2)
    Ind = 4 (-1)
    Lab = 3 (-13)
    + 2 ties – SNP/Ind & SNP/Lab

    Total seats:
    SNP 431 (+6)
    Conservatives 276 (+161)
    Labour 262 (-132)
    Independents 172 (-28)
    Liberal Democrats 67 (-4)
    Greens 19 (+5)

    In 2007‘s council elections the SNP came out top despite narrowly losing the popular vote, collecting 15 more seats than second-placed Labour.
    In 2012 they won the vote and more than doubled their lead to 31 seats.
    This year’s margin of 155 was exactly FIVE TIMES as big as the previous best.
    The 2012 result was the SNP’s best ever showing in a local election, so by exceeding that they have set a new record high. Also a record high for the SNP in terms of the proportion of seats they’ve won.

    SNP – Most seats in largest cities – Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen
    Tory revival = 9% seats in Glasgow – 8 out of 85 (SNP = 39)
    Ruth Davidson (Scot) = 23% – Jeremy Corbyn (UK) = 28%

    Anyone wanting to keep abreast of Scottish stats should visit:
    http://scotgoespop.blogspot.co.uk

    For more infö on the above also see:
    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2017/05/astonishing-tory-ferguslie-park-super-triumph/
    And continual, rolling clarifications at:
    https://wingsoverscotland.com

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Take it from me – as long as Labour in Scotland remain a unionist party they will dwindle to single figures. Especially with wee Kezia at the helm. The woman show absolutely no sense of either self-preservation, tactics or electoral changes.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Yes, I sincerely hope so, but until then SNP is yer only man.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    The tories in Scotland have been so obsessed by Indyref2 that they had 0 (no) domestic policy promises on their literature, while the SNP never mentioned Indy. Despite that the tory share of the vote is even less in Scotland than Jeremy Corbyn’s disastrous performance down south. However, strangely, the MM seem to think Corbyn’s score is a disaster while wee “Tank Girl” Davidson is on a stupendous victory. Talk about ‘false news’ – don’t try to add to it, Mick.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    See above for a more realistic assessment.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Fortunately, the tory block is far outvoted by the SNP one, and this will only increase in the future, until independence is achieved.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Thats because the MM don’t want to publish the actual figures – it would show up their spin for what is is – a bunch of lies.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    See my figures above. The much vaunted tory revival is no such thing. They were more popular in Scotland when Thatcher was in power.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    That’s because no-one else want’s her.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    I think you’ll find if you look at my topmost post here, that she is no more popular now that they tories in Scotland have been for the last 40 years

  • Reader

    Loads of numbers there. While you were compiling them did you bother adding up the number of unionist/nationalist seats/votes?

  • Reader

    Jeff, the report is a consultation sponsored by a Sinn Fein front organisation (KRB). The conclusions are that a United Irelend that adopted hard Thatcherite economics including massive cost cutting and job losses could return to prosperity after a while.
    KRB stands for Knights of the Red Branch.
    https://sluggerotoole.com/2015/11/21/when-is-an-independent-study-on-irish-unification-not-independent/

  • Reader

    BonaparteOCoonassa: Thats because the MM don’t want to publish the actual figures – it would show up their spin for what is is – a bunch of lies.
    So we’ll need to get them from the nationalist press or the SNP – any links?

  • Reader

    So, exactly the same as the last council elections, then.

  • hgreen

    Denigrating her sexuality? What does that mean? I don’t care what she is? She and the Tories however are blatantly using her sexuality for political advantage.

  • hgreen

    I’ll ignore your bit of everyday sexism there. Yes Labour will recover once the constitutional question is resolved.

  • mickfealty

    Don’t hold yer breath then?

  • mickfealty

    #Trolling?

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    There was nothing sexist about the post. Kezia just happens to be a woman but that has nothing to do with her abilities. If she had a sex change and became a man she would still be as incompetent. And her male ex-colleague Jim the Egg Man, is an equally incompetent, and much more nastily right wing character, if that makes you any happier.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Are you not able to do that yourself? But see the example in the first sentence of my post for a taster.

    As for my ‘compiling’ them, produce the real ones if they are different.

    And see:

    http://www.businessforscotland.com/bbc-deliberately-misreported-scottish-local-council-election-result/

  • Didnt ruth davidson win praise for her empassioned praise of the eu on the final debate in wembly arena? Arent the scottish tories pro eu?

  • Its amazing the lengths you are going to spin this. Truth is they won enough seats to ensure that the snp dont contol a single council. Even here in dundee, the most pro indy district in scotland, they took 2 seats off the snp along with nationalist control of council. Of course snp dominate as they own the yes side of the electorate whilst everyone else scrambles over the rest. Truth is it was a good day for unionists and the snp juggernaut has ground to a halt.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    It’s always nice to have a delusion. I admire the strength of yours.

  • Donald. Is that you? Theres no need to start calling people names because they chose to state facts that dont fit your worldview. If thats the sort of thing you are into, wings over scotland is the political blog for you.

  • Nordie Northsider

    And of course, even if there were a significant upturn in the Tory vote in Scotland, their own devotion to the first past the post electoral system for Westminster would be their undoing. If they can’t get their noses in front of the SNP, then no seats.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    I’ll take it back if you can tell me how the tories in Scotland getting less of a %age of the vote than the “disastrous” Corbyn did in England, or the fact that the tories in many cases got far less votes than the SNP candidate and only got in because of PR, or that they are still less popular than they were when Thatcher was in power, or that the SNP votes outnumbered them 5 to 1, or that the SNP actually gained more seats this time, while tory gains were mostly at the expense of Labour, can be, according to you, “spin” and that the SNP has ‘ground to a halt’. These are facts – you can look them up.

    PS Who is ‘Donald’?

  • Trump. i was making the point that you are more interested in rubbishing your adversaries and celebrating alternative facts than setting the record straight. 1. The Scottish tories doubled their number of councillors and vastly increased vote share, english labour did not. The Scottish tories know they will not be the biggest party in a crowded pro union field in Scotland. Labour had a disaster in England, as it is theoretically possible for them to form them government. So different elections, different circmstances. 2. The SNP got 35% of first votes, and the tories got 25%. That is not 5 to 1 by any measure. 3. Thatcher was obviously not as unpopular in Scotland as a lot of people like to kid themselves (they consistently got twice as many votes as the SNP). It was her legacy that killed off the tories in scotland in later years. Being that the tories are back to where they were under thathcher is a success as they have shook off her negative legacy in scotland. 4. The SNP have fewer councillors than they did last week, not more. They went in with 438 and came out with 431.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    No. They went in with 424.

    See http://www.businessforscotland.com/bbc-deliberately-misreported-scottish-local-council-election-result/

    . . . “false news” from you. I think in this case it is you who are “more interested in rubbishing your adversaries and celebrating alternative facts “. Try to see past the BBC’s ‘alternative election facts”
    ‘.

  • snp won multiple by elections since 2012. they are up a few seats from the 2012 vote day but down on where they stood the day before the 2017 election due to by elections. the bbc used the total seats held going into the elections as that was the current state of play.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    No. The BBC have used a notional number which is based on the number of seats if boundary changes had been in place at the time. They weren’t, so their figures are wrong, and wrong in such a way as to diminish the SNP’s win. What a co-incidence. You should wise up the the BBC’s unionist propaganda..

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    For further info, if you are really interested, which I doubt, see:

    http://scotgoespop.blogspot.co.uk

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Part of the reason for no overall control is the proportional allocation of votes. For example in Ferguslie Park the SNP with two seats got 2114 votes between them while the tories got one seat with 647 votes.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa

    Not any more. They were very pro EU, till the Brexit vote, when they did a Volte-face and became rabidly anti-EU. I have to admire such a principled stance.

  • BonaparteOCoonassa
  • Neil Young

    Despite what the tories and the pro unionist media claim , the SNP won an extra 6 seats, our overall first vote increased by 105000 from 2012. The PR system in place for council elections is designed to stymie any party from overall control in a council, although it can and does happen in certain areas. The other pro Indy party in Scotland, the Greens doubled their amount of councillors. The tories did well in getting their vote out but may have shot their bolt a bit too early. The only party the tories gained from was the Labour Party through their call to the unionists within the Labour Party to give them their vote. Tactical voting can go both ways obviously and it’s blatantly obvious that the only folk who can crush the tories are the SNP. Kezia Dugdale may think championing the union may be the way forward but there’s plenty in her party that don’t and plenty more that are pro Independence. I think ms Dugdale will get her jotters after a poor performance in the GE and it’ll be interesting to see what their stance is then.