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Going to the polls

Brian Taylor | 14:05 UK time, Thursday, 13 January 2011

There is, I suppose, a degree of entertaining symmetry in the possible delay to the AV referendum: the unelected House of Lords dealing with potential reform to the method by which members are elected in the Other Place.

In Scotland, certainly, it will be a source of innocent merriment for members of the Scottish Parliament - or, at least, for most of them.

That is because the AV referendum is presently scheduled to be held on the 5th of May: the day when, among sundry other democratic exercises in these islands, Holyrood goes to the polls.

MSPs from the SNP and Labour have protested long and loud about that concatenation of events.

Voters, they said, did not need their minds muddled by thoughts of Commons reform when they should be concentrating upon Holyrood's future.

In response, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats argued that the good and sensible people of Scotland and elsewhere were perfectly capable of encompassing both challenges.

Plus it would save money.

Avoid clash

There is precedent here although it is, by no means, a precise one.

Scottish local elections were also due to be held on the 5th of May. But they have been time-shifted to next year in order to avoid clashing with Holyrood.

However, that owes more to the confusion which occurred at the count four years ago when both Holyrood and Scottish councils held elections on the same day.

Changes to the design of ballot papers, allied to those multiple elections, led to a record number of votes being declared invalid.

I well recall that, at some point during the emerging controversy, I informed an astonished nation that the ballot had been a "bourach". Splendid, Gaelic word - meaning a total guddle, an utter mess.

Now, it is by no means guaranteed that holding the AV referendum on the same day as the Holyrood polls would generate Bourach Two, the sequel.

Care and caution would presumably be exercised.

Lessons would be learned.

However, there is now an established folk memory in much of the Scottish body politic to the effect that dual elections can be trouble.

Hence the close attention being paid in Scotland to their Lordships' deliberations.

Comments

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  • 1. At 2:20pm on 13 Jan 2011, Alba4eva wrote:

    "However, that owes more to the confusion which occurred at the count four years ago when both Holyrood and Scottish councils held elections on the same day."

    Pure Supposition Brian... others would argue that it was more likely due to Electoral Fraud and Postal Vote rigging!

    Wow..Fraud in my first post, 2 threads in a row!

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  • 2. At 3:01pm on 13 Jan 2011, kadok wrote:

    Yes ,we need to be aware of postal vote fraud. and we all know who the guilty party are.

    Anything for power and I mean ANYTHING.

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  • 3. At 3:30pm on 13 Jan 2011, Anagach wrote:


    Well the wedding is already in place so they can move the AV
    thing, its spoiling effect in media and political coverage
    is no longer required.


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  • 4. At 3:41pm on 13 Jan 2011, sid_ts63 wrote:

    afternoon, confusion only helps 1 party.
    who is in charge of running the Scottish parliamentary elections this time around? westminster or holyrood?
    what has been put in place to ensure the abuses of the postal vote system cannot be repeated by anyone?
    I for one hope their lordships pull it off, having the referendum on the AV voting system on a separate day could prove to be very interesting indeed.
    the chances of spoilt papers winning the day is a definite possibility

    Sid

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  • 5. At 4:30pm on 13 Jan 2011, AyeRightNaw wrote:

    "Confusion only helps 1 party" - How exactly does that work? The last time there was confusion it was combined with a neat rigging of the ballot sheet and benefited only one party. In case you've forgotten they went on to form the current Scottish Government.

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  • 6. At 4:57pm on 13 Jan 2011, spagan wrote:

    5 AyeRight
    I presume that the "1 Party" will be referring to the -
    1 Party - with the most MPs in jail for theft or fraud or fire-raising?
    Or it could be -
    1 Party - with the most convictions for electoral fraud?
    Or it could be -
    1 Party - who invaded Iraq, accelerated student debt, enlarged the poverty gap, burst the UK economy, etc etc etc

    Any idea who that "1 Party" are?
    Slainte Mhor

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  • 7. At 5:07pm on 13 Jan 2011, AyeRightNaw wrote:

    @spagan - Can I take your decision to go off-topic as confirmation that electoral confusion does indeed only benefit 1 party?

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  • 8. At 5:11pm on 13 Jan 2011, kadok wrote:

    5.
    Dear oh dear.

    Do you really beleive that?

    Double, dear oh dear.


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  • 9. At 5:19pm on 13 Jan 2011, oldmack wrote:

    Brian,
    I have to take you and many others with the phrase “Lessons will be learned”.
    Not since the days of the tause were lessons learned, they tried rote that didn’t work they tried fear and that didn’t work, and the last time round they tried fraud as well as theft, but still lessons have not been learned.
    This time round they will have to be careful, to-days bye-election was caused by someone doing a bit of political lying but the silly (insert the appropriate expletive) also put it into print.
    Come May how many will require proof readers, and how many will be gaged physically before the United Nations declare Scotland persona non gratia?
    No Brian “Lessons are never Learned”

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  • 10. At 5:22pm on 13 Jan 2011, AyeRightNaw wrote:

    @kadok - It is not a question of believing that - I'm simply stating the facts. Do you dispute that the election was full of confusion and that the SNP won?

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  • 11. At 6:07pm on 13 Jan 2011, sid_ts63 wrote:

    #10 ayerightnaw. evening, don't know about kadok but your 2 points that the election was full of confusion and the SNP won everyone accepts both of them . the fact you ignored the rest of my post and indeed didn't even try to answer any of the questions I put speaks volumes. so I will try again
    Is Wendy's brother in charge of this years Scottish election again?
    yes or no?
    have the obvious flaws and abuses of the postal vote system been addressed ?
    yes or no?
    Sid

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  • 12. At 6:10pm on 13 Jan 2011, ambi wrote:

    #10. At 5:22pm on 13 Jan 2011, AyeRightNaw wrote:
    "The last time there was confusion it was combined with a neat rigging of the ballot sheet and benefited only one party."

    #10. At 5:22pm on 13 Jan 2011, AyeRightNaw wrote:
    "Do you dispute that the election was full of confusion and that the SNP won?"

    Two statements entirely different in meaning, explicit and implicit.

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  • 13. At 6:16pm on 13 Jan 2011, bingowings87 wrote:

    #8 kadok,

    Understanding how the ballot papers would be designed following changes in the rules on party presentation was a key part of the SNP's strategy in 2007.

    Electoral Commission rules allowed any party to vary how it presented the party name. The SNP chose to take the opportunity to present itself on the Regional List as ‘Alex Salmond for First Minister’. The regional list result was key to making the SNP the largest party in terms of both seats and votes.

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  • 14. At 6:51pm on 13 Jan 2011, kaybraes wrote:

    It won't make a lot of difference to anything if the format of the voting paper is a wee bit confusing ; anybody that votes for the party led by the strange Gray man could already be considered to be in a state of desperate confusion.

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  • 15. At 7:25pm on 13 Jan 2011, spagan wrote:

    7 AyeRight
    Sorry - you mentioned "rigging" - and I presumed that you meant New Labour masquarading as Scottish New Labour?
    Was it some other form of New Labour rigging that you meant?
    Slainte Mhor

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  • 16. At 7:31pm on 13 Jan 2011, NorthernSole wrote:

    The poll should be a little more interesting with the revelation today that we are squandering £75m on paying for non-scots to go to our universities while stopping our own students form getting a place.

    Many people will find this repugnant. How can any government accept this? 15000 places that could have gone to Scots.

    It has taken the SNP four years to even try to do anything about this. Why? not an unreasonable question. What about Labour the years before this.

    What a bunch of clowns we have in Holyrood.

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  • 17. At 7:51pm on 13 Jan 2011, govanite wrote:

    #5 AyeRightNaw

    So my unionist chum, the confusing 2007 election.
    Which party was in charge in London and Edinburgh and gave the control over the election to their little lacky the Secretary of State for Scotland ?
    Which party destroyed the economy ?
    Destroyed Iraq ?
    Has MPs stealing from the public purse ?
    MPs committing electoral fraud ?
    Opened the door to the Tories ?
    Is beholden to Southern England for votes to gain power ?
    Which party fails Scotland time and time again ?

    I'll give you a clue, it isn't Mr Salmond's party.

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  • 18. At 8:45pm on 13 Jan 2011, govanite wrote:

    Don't know why I've been moderated but I do know that Labour was in power during the organising of the 2007 election and nobody is going to rewrite history by denying that.

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  • 19. At 10:06pm on 13 Jan 2011, Barbazenzero wrote:

    #16 NorthernSole
    "The poll should be a little more interesting with the revelation today that we are squandering £75m on paying for non-scots to go to our universities while stopping our own students form getting a place ... How can any government accept this?"

    I think you're railing at the wrong government. The anomaly is nothing to do with the Scottish government, but is an EU directive which successive hues of UK government have accepted. Students resident in all EU states must be given the same educational conditions in all other EU states, but it's entirely allowed to discriminate against one's own "regions".

    Of course, if a post-independence Scotland remained within the EU, students from the other 3 currently "home" nations could not be discriminated against.

    Which poll was it that you believe this will impact?

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  • 20. At 10:17pm on 13 Jan 2011, kadok wrote:

    16,
    If labour have their way there will be less Scots at Scottish universities as labour have a great desire to end free education forcing Scottish students into debt and forcing poor students out on their ear.

    God help us if Gray,s pipe dream of becoming FM comes true.

    What a nightmare that would be.

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  • 21. At 10:24pm on 13 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    5. AyeRightNaw
    "...combined with a neat rigging of the ballot sheet and benefited only one party. In case you've forgotten they went on to form the current Scottish Government."

    What "rigging of the ballot sheet" has your imagination conjured for you? Could it be the SNP's use of "Alex Salmond for First Minister". A perfectly legitimate use of an officially registered party description. A description which also has the advantage of being honest and true - unlike the British Labour Party's efforts to deceive electors into thinking they are voting for an entirely fictitious "Scottish Labour Party".

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  • 22. At 10:30pm on 13 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    7. AyeRightNaw
    "Can I take your decision to go off-topic as confirmation that electoral confusion does indeed only benefit 1 party?"

    With the pettiness we have come to expect from the unionist alliance you seek to make a political point-scoring exercise of an issue which should be of concern to everyone regardless of their political leanings. The truth, which you will never be able to recognise or acknowledge, is that "electoral confusion" undermines the democratic process and so advantages nobody.

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  • 23. At 10:37pm on 13 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    10. AyeRightNaw
    "@kadok - It is not a question of believing that - I'm simply stating the facts. Do you dispute that the election was full of confusion and that the SNP won?"

    Even if there were any substance to what you are implying all it would do is underline the abysmal incompetence of the British Labour Party who assigned one of their "best and brightest" to the task of organising the confusion only for it to benefit another party - according to you.

    British Labour Party - political party? Or music hall turn?

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  • 24. At 10:37pm on 13 Jan 2011, Every Day Brings Freedom Closer wrote:

    Use technology.

    Issue each voter with a swipecard/barcode, and install electronic terminals with touchscreens (to be activated by the card/code) which would display instructions - and ONLY allow valid votes, albeit possibly with an option of a "No vote" to allow deliberate (rather than accidental) spoiling of ballots.

    As to confusion last time, it is the responsibility of the voter to ensure that the vote casts accurately reflects his/her intent - if in doubt, there are staff available to be asked for clarification and/or assistance.

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  • 25. At 10:44pm on 13 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    13. bingowings87
    "Electoral Commission rules allowed any party to vary how it presented the party name. The SNP chose to take the opportunity to present itself on the Regional List as ‘Alex Salmond for First Minister’. The regional list result was key to making the SNP the largest party in terms of both seats and votes."

    But nobody can say what effect this had. To assume that there was a significant positive effect is to grossly underestimate the intelligence of the average voter by assuming that they would simply go for the option at the top of the list.

    The British Labour Party's use of "Scottish Labour", on the other hand, is intentionally calculated to deceive as there is no Scottish Labour Party.

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  • 26. At 10:47pm on 13 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    16. NorthernSole
    "The poll should be a little more interesting with the revelation today that we are squandering £75m on paying for non-scots to go to our universities while stopping our own students form getting a place.

    Many people will find this repugnant.
    "

    Not those who know the meaning of the word "reciprocity".

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  • 27. At 11:01pm on 13 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    24. Another Year Closer To Freedom
    "As to confusion last time, it is the responsibility of the voter to ensure that the vote casts accurately reflects his/her intent - if in doubt, there are staff available to be asked for clarification and/or assistance."

    An excellent point which is not made often enough. In truth, however, I have never met anyone who admitted to having been confused by the ballot paper. I have to wonder to what extent "voter confusion" rather than the technology employed was to blame.

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  • 28. At 11:37pm on 13 Jan 2011, bingowings87 wrote:

    #25 Electric Hermit,

    The man who devised the SNP's marketing strategy for 2007, Ian Dommett, clearly believes it had the decisive effect. In fact, he goes as far to call it "The coup de grace".

    In your #21 you call the use of "Alex Salmond for 1st Minister" on the ballot paper "honest and true". The public cast no votes on who will be the 1st Minister. That is up to Parliament.

    The use of "Alex Salmond for 1st minister" on the ballot paper was chosen to give the impression that the voters somehow had this appointment in their gift, when clearly they did not. It is for this reason that this electoral sleight of hand will not be allowed this time around.

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  • 29. At 00:04am on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    28. bingowings87
    "The man who devised the SNP's marketing strategy for 2007, Ian Dommett, clearly believes it had the decisive effect. In fact, he goes as far to call it "The coup de grace".

    Well! He would say that, wouldn't he.

    28. bingowings87
    "In your #21 you call the use of "Alex Salmond for 1st Minister" on the ballot paper "honest and true". The public cast no votes on who will be the 1st Minister."

    The public cast no votes on who will be the Prime Minister of the UK. That doesn't stop the London parties having televised "leaders" debates as if the party leaders were actually candidates for an elected office. What's the difference?

    There is none. But the infantile fuss about the SNP's tactic does serve to demonstrate the kind of hypocrisy to which the unionists will happily stoop.

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  • 30. At 00:15am on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    28. bingowings87
    "The use of "Alex Salmond for 1st minister" on the ballot paper was chosen to give the impression that the voters somehow had this appointment in their gift, when clearly they did not. It is for this reason that this electoral sleight of hand will not be allowed this time around."

    For your information, "Alex Salmond For First Minister" continues to be a registered description of the Scottish National Party. As such the party will be entitled to use this on the ballot papers in May.

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  • 31. At 08:52am on 14 Jan 2011, soosider wrote:

    #28 bingowings
    the description of "Alex Salmond for First Minister" has exactly the same standing as "Scottish Labour Party" or "Scottish Labour Candidate". Surely if one is considered to be questionable then they all should ? At least the Alex Salmond is a true statement, the other two are clearly intended to misinform and misguide people into believing that such an entity actually exists.

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  • 32. At 09:16am on 14 Jan 2011, bingowings87 wrote:

    #29 Electric Hermit,

    Of course he would say that .... but I doubt he would be would have been able to publish his self congratulatory report without the blessing of the SNP leadership. Therefore it is fair to assume that the SNP are comfortable with his views.

    There is a big difference between a series of TV shows and the Ballot Papers. The Ballot papers must be accessible to all in the electorate and therefore must have clarity at the heart of their design.

    #30,

    Registered Descriptions such as "Alex Salmond for 1st Minister" will not be able to be used on the Constituency Ballot Paper. They will only be allowed on the Regional List Ballot Paper if placed in a Secondary position to the Registered Party Name.

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  • 33. At 09:33am on 14 Jan 2011, sid_ts63 wrote:

    #32 Bingowings,morning, pot calling the kettle black springs to mind. at least the SNP actually exsits There is no such thing as the "Scottish labour party " so what WILL the labour party call themselves this time
    Sid

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  • 34. At 10:58am on 14 Jan 2011, Denno wrote:

    #16 NorthernSole - This is part and parcel of being an EU member. Students from an EU member state must be treated in the same manner as home students. I've no idea how much the Scottish and UK governments save from students who study abroad, but I bet it's a pittance. Both governments should do more to push study abroad as a viable option for students, with a growing number of countries offering courses taught in English, particularly at Masters level. There's no reason why continental Europe can't be flooded with our best and brightest.

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  • 35. At 11:10am on 14 Jan 2011, DougtheDug wrote:

    #32 bingowings87 wrote:

    Registered Descriptions such as "Alex Salmond for 1st Minister" will not be able to be used on the Constituency Ballot Paper.

    Well, yes and no. If you go through the, "The Scottish Parliament (Elections Etc.) Order 2010", which lays out the rules for what can appear on the ballot paper it's not that simple.

    Though the order says party descriptions are not permitted on the constituency ballot paper and must come second on the regional ballot paper any registered party can prefix their registered name with the word, "Scottish", which then appears in full on both ballot papers as if it was the genuine registered name of the party.

    What that means is that though the SNP cannot now use the party description of, "Alex Salmond for First Minister", on the constituency ballot paper and have to place it second on the regional ballot paper the Labour Party, Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats have all been given a back door to use their party descriptions both on the constituency ballot paper and in first place on the regional ballot paper.

    That's British democracy for you. It must have hurt the three unionist parties when they were forced to stop using the prefix, "Scottish", on the European election paper.

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  • 36. At 11:15am on 14 Jan 2011, Chiefy1724 wrote:

    So, let's be entirely fair to the "Scottish Labour Party" here.

    They can register "Iain Gray for First Minister" as a description of their party.

    That will make it absolutely clear who and what people are voting for. A vote for Northern British NotNuLabAnymore means that you want Iain Gray for First Minister.

    Any takers ? Wonder why not. Could it be because that would point out the difference between Alex Salmond, Respected Scottish Political Figure (actually, he's no done too bad when you look at it), and Iain Gray, Political [insert adjectives of choice], insulter of nations and all round numpty.

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  • 37. At 12:03pm on 14 Jan 2011, Barbazenzero wrote:

    #36 Chiefy1724
    "Iain Gray, Political [insert adjectives of choice], insulter of nations and all round numpty."

    A good try, but I'm afraid I have to echo Zero Mostel's (Max Bialystock) immortal words in The Producers when searching for a certain flop and considering a musical of Kafka's Metamorphosis:

    "Gregor Samsa awoke one morning to discover that he had been transformed into a giant cockroach. Nah, it's too good."

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  • 38. At 12:20pm on 14 Jan 2011, Chiefy1724 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 39. At 12:47pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    32. bingowings87
    "There is a big difference between a series of TV shows and the Ballot Papers."

    Indeed there is. The rigged "leaders debates" had far more potential to influence the electorate. Which is precisely why the unionist alliance was so desperate to exclude Alex Salmond. They were perfectly aware that such a direct confrontation with the First Minister; head of the Scottish government; and leader of the largest political party in Scotland would surely expose the paucity of their arguments.

    Fear makes people do strange and often very distasteful things.

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  • 40. At 12:52pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    35. DougtheDug
    "What that means is that though the SNP cannot now use the party description of, "Alex Salmond for First Minister", on the constituency ballot paper and have to place it second on the regional ballot paper the Labour Party, Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats have all been given a back door to use their party descriptions both on the constituency ballot paper and in first place on the regional ballot paper.
    "

    I had just been looking at the Scottish Parliament (Elections Etc.) Order 2010 before reading your post. I was struck by the blatant rigging which allows the British Labour Party to continue its deception.

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  • 41. At 1:13pm on 14 Jan 2011, Barbazenzero wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 42. At 1:22pm on 14 Jan 2011, reincarnation wrote:

    35. DougtheDug

    However, I note from the Order that "This Order has no effect for the purposes of any election for which the date of poll is on or
    before 4th April 2011."

    Should the Unionists play too many silly games with the Budget, the election may not be run under these new rules.

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  • 43. At 1:53pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    42. reincarnation
    "Should the Unionists play too many silly games with the Budget, the election may not be run under these new rules.

    "

    The unionist alliance will put off going to the polls as long as possible. Not least because they are fervently hoping that the government will screw up in some major way. Or that they and their friends in the media will be able to contrive some sort of "scandal" involving the SNP.

    Watch out for lots of headlines along the lines of, "Alex Salmond accused...!".

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  • 44. At 2:24pm on 14 Jan 2011, Barbazenzero wrote:

    #43 Electric Hermit
    "The unionist alliance will put off going to the polls as long as possible."

    Fair comment, although I thought the "Alex Salmond accused...!" headlines started in June 2007 if not May. Surely the key point is that over the next budget, the government could play much harder ball in budget negotiations knowing of that desperation. Being defeated at Holyrood over a populist budget which secured the support of the Greens wouldn't be such a bad start to an election campaign.

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  • 45. At 2:47pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:


    I was hearing that when we go to the polls we will be able to vote for Gorgeous George and Gail Sheridan as members of solidarity, I wonder if Solidarity still stand for Scottish Independence, I hope so, it could be an interesting alternative vote.

    Free Tommy!

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  • 46. At 2:51pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    44. Barbazenzero
    "Being defeated at Holyrood over a populist budget which secured the support of the Greens wouldn't be such a bad start to an election campaign."

    In theory, yes. But this does not take account of the manner and extent to which such an eventuality would be distorted by the unionist media.

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  • 47. At 3:04pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:

    Oops I think I got the wrong end of the stick there, seems that Gorgeous George is too interested in keeping us in the union, what a pity.

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  • 48. At 3:17pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    45. rog_rocks
    "I was hearing that when we go to the polls we will be able to vote for Gorgeous George and Gail Sheridan as members of solidarity..."

    There are signs of the usual factionalism and in-fighting that always seems to beset the left. If only they could get their house in order then maybe they could focus on the politics of the country, rather than the internal politics of their organisation.

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  • 49. At 3:24pm on 14 Jan 2011, Barbazenzero wrote:

    #46 Electric Hermit
    "But this does not take account of the manner and extent to which such an eventuality would be distorted by the unionist media."

    Quite so, but at least it would be at the beginning of the election campaign, with hustings, canvassing and debates giving some chance of the facts becoming known, and even Pacific Quay being reined in a little by election period rules.

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  • 50. At 3:53pm on 14 Jan 2011, Every Day Brings Freedom Closer wrote:

    43. Electric Hermit wrote:

    The unionist alliance will put off going to the polls as long as possible. Not least because they are fervently hoping that the government will screw up in some major way. Or that they and their friends in the media will be able to contrive some sort of "scandal" involving the SNP.


    I think they will have a long wait.

    Salmond is as slippery as a salmon - in a good way! - and any mudslinging will surely rebound on the slinger.

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  • 51. At 4:21pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    50. Another Year Closer To Freedom
    "Salmond is as slippery as a salmon..."

    A bit of a back-handed compliment there. But I know what you mean. I never much liked the man. But I always recognised that he was a very astute political operator. And I never doubted his sincerity or his integrity. Despite being more restrained these days he can still come across as a bit smug. (I think his physical appearance has a lot to do with that.) This is a trivial price to pay for a First Minister who is both highly competent and unquestionably committed to working for the benefit of Scotland and its people.

    And it's not like there are any other viable candidates for the job.

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  • 52. At 5:15pm on 14 Jan 2011, GrassyKnollington wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 53. At 5:36pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:


    #48 Electric Hermit,

    Yes, and Gorgeous George would also have to stand up for our country, not the British State, before I would seriously consider him as a worthy vote. For me that would now mean I would have to hear him publicly announce his support for an Independent Scotland.
    I met him during the 1992 general election campaign, the day before the vote in fact, John Major won, and I asked him what would he do if his party lost (he didn't think he would but it was blown with Neil Kinnock's Oh yeeeaaaaah's I think) considering that his party, as they did then, would have had a mandate to walk out of Westminster and form a government here (it is what they offered and what Scotland voted), he told me that if they lost that time this is what he would do. He didn't!

    I'm glad I voted SNP!

    Instead he gave us the damp squid of "Scotland United".

    Oh well never mind, it’s all history now.

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  • 54. At 5:57pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    53. rog_rocks
    "Yes, and Gorgeous George would also have to stand up for our country, not the British State, before I would seriously consider him as a worthy vote."

    I would only ever vote for a pro-independence candidate/party. Secession from the union is the overarching priority at all times.

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  • 55. At 6:03pm on 14 Jan 2011, Barbazenzero wrote:

    #46 Electric Hermit
    "But this does not take account of the manner and extent to which such an eventuality would be distorted by the unionist media."

    As a PS to my #49, this website's new Daily Record sales dip as industry see circulation drop can only be good news to anyone hoping for more even-handedness in Scottish political reporting, informing us that "Sales of the Daily Record have fallen below 300,000 for the first time, according to figures for December" and going on with the cheery news that "The Scotsman dropped to 43,300, with the Sunday Mail, Sunday Post and Scotland on Sunday all down by just over 7%".

    allmediascotland.com have the full audited details here.

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  • 56. At 6:04pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:

    :) Sorry Squib :)

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  • 57. At 6:14pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:

    #54 Agreed, so would I, am only meaning a consideration, for others, particularly for the ladies who wouldn't vote for SNP because they don't fancy the leader, perhaps Gorgeous George would fair better there, then I dunno not being much of a lady myself :)

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  • 58. At 6:32pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    57. rog_rocks
    "...then I dunno not being much of a lady myself"

    Practice! Practice! Practice!

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  • 59. At 6:42pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 60. At 7:00pm on 14 Jan 2011, Electric Hermit wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 61. At 7:10pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 62. At 8:40pm on 14 Jan 2011, govanite wrote:

    #61 Now, imagine that !

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  • 63. At 9:11pm on 14 Jan 2011, rog_rocks wrote:

    She swallowed a cat!

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  • 64. At 10:18pm on 14 Jan 2011, RandomScot wrote:

    @AyeRightNaw

    The only confusion with the 2007 election is that associated with who set it up. That was done by Labour and by Douglas Alexander in particular

    Your nasty wee insinuation that the SNP had done something for their own benefit is as false as Wendy's "Bring it on challenge" when Parliamentary rules prevented such a thing, which she should be aware of.

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