Another general election, another reason for us to ponder electoral reform – and an excuse for me to finally get round to that post about my preferred form of PR. I’ve written in the past about my distaste for STV, which has only deepened since I fell afoul of it last month. Yet in the aftermath of Holyrood last year, I was so scunnered with AMS I’d have taken – and on balance would still take – STV over it. So exactly what would I have instead?
Like all political nerds, I’ve got a huge number of different threads swirling round my brain at the moment. The second shock general election result in as many years has thrown us all, and we’re once again utterly perplexed by our own country. So I’m sticking some of the things I’m thinking about on here, to clear them from my own brain as much as share them with others. Since I’ve got quite a lot of these thoughts, I’ve got some Scottish ones and British ones. Let’s do Scotland now, Britain later.
We interrupt our haphazardly scheduled posts on Hypothetical Council Elections for some ponderings on the Liberal Democrats. Exciting, eh?
It’s perhaps not surprising to see a Green taking the time to dismantle the Lib Dems, seeing as we’re currently locked in mortal combat for the position of Scotland’s fourth party. We’ve overtaken them in Holyrood and in European elections (not that we’re going to have any more of the latter, unless we’re lucky) whilst they remain ahead in the UK Parliament and Councils. Yet the Lib Dems have something the Greens do not – a perception in the media and public that they are a “major” party, whilst the Greens are a “minor” party.
From bins to bikes, pollution to potholes, and schools to social care, the people in Victoria Park care deeply about their local services. Parties that have taken the decision to focus on the constitution are doing voters a great disservice. Local politics is the most basic, most accessible and most approachable level of politics for most people. We should be taking it seriously, not turning it into another chapter in the national drama. A vote for me in Victoria Park, and for Greens across Glasgow and Scotland, will elect someone to champion local communities and put power in your hands.
The Evening Times had a little bit of a faux-pas today, tweeting a link to an article about “hilarious” posters in Nicola Sturgeon’s Glasgow Southside constituency. The not actually funny at all posters are mock “Missing” posters, accusing the First Minister of being AWOL from her constituency. The very existence of these posters, the reaction to …
So after all the sound and fury of the past month, the fifth Scottish Parliament passed its first budget today. A £160mn boost to proposed funding for local government netted the Greens the biggest budget concession in the parliament’s history, and Derek Mackay safe passage for his budget. This was, as many MSPs pointed out, …