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Thursday, May 05, 2005

Scotland

Scotland is an interesting place. The main reason is that there have been some fairly substantial boundary changes as the number of Scottish seats has been reduced in answer to the so-called West Lothian question (namely, that now they have their own Parliament why should scottish MPs vote in Westminster on English matters - the answer given is to reduce the overall number of Scottish seats). The other intersting reason is the SNP - Scottish National Party, whose long-term aim is Scottish independence.

The SNP had a high-water mark in 1997 with 6 Westminster seats, but got hammered in 2001. Their veteren leader - Alex Salmond - had retired and Albert Swinney took over, and was an unmitigated disaster. Mr Swinney is now ousted and Mr Salmond is back in. I would expect the SNP to claw back a seat or two.

The Tories lost all their seats in 1997, and got back only 1 in 2001. Any Tory gains here are noteworthy.

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