March 4, 2015

A PEOPLE WHO THINK THEMSELVES A NATION ARE ONE:

Why an SNP surge at Westminster could mean the end of Britain (Alex Massie, 2/28/15, The Spectator)


Anyone seeking to understand the strength of the SNP should look to those parts of Scotland where the party is supposed to be weakest. At the last election, the nationalists took just under 10 per cent of the vote in the Scottish Borders. This year, Tory canvass returns suggest the SNP may treble its share of the vote in one of the most staunchly unionist seats in Scotland.

For months, opinion polls have made unremittingly gloomy reading for unionists. The nationalists are heading for a victory on a scale still not fully comprehended in England. The polls suggest the SNP could win as many as 55 of Scotland's 59 seats, up from six at present. No one can quite bring themselves to believe an earthquake of such magnitude is about to strike Scottish politics. Bookmakers' odds forecast a smaller SNP landslide, but winning even 35 seats might be enough to prevent Ed Miliband from winning a majority. Without its Celtic base, Labour would struggle to govern Britain -- unless a deal is cut with the nationalists.

Far from finishing the SNP, the referendum campaign has left them stronger than ever. Indeed, the SNP is no longer just a party, it is a movement -- and one boasting, per capita, more than twice as many members as the three main unionist parties combined.

Posted by at March 4, 2015 8:16 PM
  

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