Archive for April, 2016

The big accountability lie: in Scottish Parliament elections you have to pretend that you’ll succeed

The big accountability lie: in Scottish Parliament elections you have to pretend that you’ll succeed

Scotland goes to the polls on Thursday, with the SNP looking set to retain their majority and their status as the sole party of government. Here, Paul Cairney assesses what exactly you can and can’t lay at the door of the Scottish Government, and what is to the credit or fault of the UK government, or indeed Europe. 

Scottish Parliament election preview: the last beats of a Labour ‘heartland’ in Central Scotland?

Scottish Parliament election preview: the last beats of a Labour ‘heartland’ in Central Scotland?

The Scottish Parliament elections take place early next month, with the SNP expected to solidify their dominance in the post-referendum Scotland. The Central Scotland region has long been a Labour stronghold with the party’s legendary and revered first leader Keir Hardie from the area. Here, Judith Sijstermans previews the contests, and suggests that this election may represent the ‘last beats’ of the Labour ‘heartland’. 

Scottish Parliament election preview: Continued SNP dominance in the North East, but who will pick up the scraps?

Scottish Parliament election preview: Continued SNP dominance in the North East, but who will pick up the scraps?

The North East of Scotland contains Scotland’s third and fourth largest cities in Aberdeen and Dundee, with these cities representing ‘No’ and ‘Yes’ strongholds during 2014’s independence referendum. In the 2011 election, the SNP swept the board in this region, even managing to win a list MSP – something which the voting system in use was specifically designed to prevent. Here, Graeme Baxter and Iain MacLeod run the rule over the constituency and list contests, and predict continued SNP dominance. 

Scottish Parliament election preview: From four party politics to further consolidation in the South of Scotland?

Scottish Parliament election preview: From four party politics to further consolidation in the South of Scotland?

The Scottish Parliament elections are upon us, with the SNP expected to consolidate their current dominance over Labour and the Conservatives. Here, Alistair Clark looks at the contest in the South Scotland region, an area which has had a recent history of four party politics but may be seeing its political profile shift.

Scotland will continue to be a psephologist’s delight for the foreseeable future

Scotland will continue to be a psephologist’s delight for the foreseeable future

The Scottish Parliament election is next month, with the SNP looking set to increase their majority in the Holyrood Parliament, with Labour and the Liberal Democrats looking likely to suffer further losses following 2014’s independence referendum. Here, Sean Swan looks over the forthcoming contest, reflecting that Scotland will continue to delight psephologists owing to its supremely interesting political make-up. 

How many unsuccessful MSP constituency candidates will be elected by regional list?

How many unsuccessful MSP constituency candidates will be elected by regional list?

The electoral system for the Scottish Parliament means that candidates rejected by voters in the constituency section may still find themselves in Holyrood, courtesy of the regional lists. Malcolm Harvey suggests that those very parliamentarians may be called on to address this quirk in the system in the next session.