Friday, 7 May 2010


Further to some comments in an earlier post today, it appears that the SNP will not go into any kind of coalition with any of the London based parties. They will however work as the London parties do in Holyrood, on a case by case issue depending on merit.

Alex Salmond made it clear to the BBC that Scotland had voted clearly against the Conservatives. No one could really deny that. One seat out of 59 is hardly a ringing endorsement. However, it could be said by the same yardstick, Scotland did not vote SNP either. However, figures further in the post suggest that perhaps were the system fairer SNP’s votes would have brought them in nearer 17 seats.

It voted Labour, and Jim Murphy says that Mr Brown has the constitutional and moral right to try to form a government. I’m not sure where he gets the “moral” bit from. It is patiently obvious that England has voted for a Tory government. Why he thinks that Brown has any moral right to govern is beyond me.

Although technically Brown has the constitutional right to first bite at the cherry when it comes to forming a government, he appears to accept, even if it hasn’t filtered down as far as Murphy, that talks are underway between the Tories, as the largest party both in seats and in votes in the whole UK, and the Liberals, as the party with enough seats to make the difference.

Party: Seats: Gain: Loss: Net: Votes: %:+/-%
Conservative: 306: 100: 3: +97: 10,706,647: 36.1: +3.8
Labour: 258: 3: 94: -91: 8,604,358: 29.0: -6.2
Libs: 57: 8: 13: -5: 6,827,938: 23.0: +1.0

I’m happy to hear that Salmond won’t do deals with the parties in London. It would have been wrong to get involved in English, Welsh and Irish politics.

Talking of moral rights just one look at the figures above gives an indication of just how morally dubious claims of either of the two big parties are.

That approx 10.5 million votes should equal 306 seats; 8.5 million seats equal 258 seats and 6.5 million equal 57 seats shows what a travesty of justice the British voting system is. Labour needs 33,000 votes to get a seat; the Tories 35,000, and the Liberals 120,000. (The SNP needs 82,000 for a seat.)

It’s certainly time for a change!

Sorry about the table; it's hard to read but I can't get it to work any other way.


  1. Considering they only held the 6 seats they had and considering that the largest party in the UK parliament is around 15 seats short of an overall majority, I really doubt the London based parties are interested in what Salmond has to offer anyway.

  2. Well it has been suggested on the BBC that there are more ways to skin a cat than talk to the Liberals; however, we are used to being treated like we don't matter by the London establishmnent QM, so that rebuff isn't unexpected. We had nearly 500,000 votes, which of course in a big country like yours is nothing, but it represents a fair proportion of the voting population of a little unimportant part of the UK with just 5 million people.

    If the voting system represented the way that people actually voted instead of the builkt in Labour advantage we would have had 17 or 18 seats, which might have reduced their seat tally by around 10 giving them only 31.

    The Tories would still have had only 1.

  3. PS: Actually, as the Lib Dems would have had many more seats, it is unlikely that Labour would ahve had much more than we did.

  4. PR-ish figures would be Lab - 24 SNP - 12 LibDem - 12 Tory - 11

  5. Salmond has taken the right option by not backing any one party outright. Although I have stated that I wish to see Cameron in government rather than Brown, this does not mean I prefer Tory to Labour by any means and its just that I want to see some of hapless saps in Labour ousted from government most notably Murphy and Alexander.

    It looks like the Tories and Lib/Dems will do some sort of deal and this can be good news for the SNP come 2011. Unless Labour win the most seats and go it alone like the SNP have done I cant see Labour entering a coalition with the Lib/Dems when in England they are in bed with Cameron.

    Lib/Dem voters in Scotland may switch off from their party and lean towards the SNP when the Tory/Lib cuts head up the M74. All in all what ever happens down south I think will benefit the SNPs chances next year.

    Sophia Pangloss is right with her PR seat allocations for Scotland based on the current 59 seats but for proper PR we need additional top-up seats and Tris's figures I think reflect this.

  6. Tris

    Can you not use some sort of comment moderation on Mr Irish Alphabet geezer?
    Every time I read his comments I end up having to replace my computer screen!

  7. Oh thanks Sophia. I didn't know how to work that out really... I took the fact that Labour needed 33,000 votes to earn one seat, and the SNP needed getting on for 3 times that!

  8. LOL, No Allan I was just guessing at it... my maths won't run to stuff like additional top up stuff... goodness, I'm just a simple lad LOL

    Aww bless him Allan, Niko means well... I think.... I hope....well....ewww errr....


    Try to calm yourself. Take deep breaths and say Mr Niko's only saying it all to wind me up... OK?

  9. Yes, I hope you;'re right. Certtainly it makes sense to me. Lib Tory poact in London, Lib Lab pact in Edinburgh... LOL Nah, they really couldn't do that could they?

    Aye wee Dougie Alexander and Jim the Skeleton on the back benches on only £65,000 a year..... awwwwww

    I'm sure they will soon find ways to supplement their meagre incomes.

  10. Ah'm enjoyin' the irony o' the situation. Were we tae get PR, then we'd be lookin' at somethin' like 250/190/140, an' Mr Clegg wid be haein' EXACTLY the same sort o' conversations he's been haein' th'day. An' tho ah judged thae figures fer Scotland, wi' STV in MMconstituencies, it may work oot slightly differently.

  11. Yep... there is irony in that Sophia.

    I don't really ahve a grip on all the different forms of PR. I should read up... but I'm really lazy!!!

  12. Tris

    Nothing simple about your blog so I'm guessing your not a simple lad at all lol!

    The next time I read one of Mr Niko's comments I will take a deep breath but I can't promise that I will not ruin another computer screen. I guess he is harmless though and does know how to get a bite or two.

    I'm sure the gruesome twosome will find ways to supplement their incomes. Edinburgh is crying out for a return of the Ladyboys of Bangkok!

  13. Sophia Pangloss

    Your right with your PR analysis and Clegg would still be sandwiched in the middle trying to make deals.

  14. Quiet Man:

    If Cameron makes it to be Prime Minister is still an if.

    What you've got to do is look at the real numbers in the parliament.

    Sinn Fèin don't take up their seats in Westminster so that makes the total 645.

    The Speaker is not allowed to vote so it comes down to 644.

    To get a majority in this Parliament you need only 323 not 326.

    Labour 258, Lib-Dem 57, SNP 6 and PC 3 comes to 324.

    It's not the only combination as there's also the DUP 8, the SDLP, 3, the Greens 1 and the Alliance, 1 but the SNP and PC could keep a Labour/Lib-Dem alliance alive in Westminster.

  15. Ye gads Allan. You could put a lad, simple or not, off his sleep for a week with that thought... Murphy and Alexander as......oh no, the thought it too horrendous. Thank heaven I live in quiet old Dundee...

  16. Aye, thanks for doing thae Maths there Doug. Like I said to Allan there, I'm a tad on the simple side when it comes to the old arithmetic...

    I was pretty certain that there were combinations other than the Tories and the Liberals.

    QM: Alex didn't just come out and say it... he was asked by a journalist.

  17. I don’t see how SNP/PC can support a Labour/Lib Dem coalition even on a case by case basis and still not vote on purely English matters. For example let’s assume an English education bill came before parliament. The 6 SNP MP’s would not be able to vote on it which would leave Gordon 5 short of a majority so he would then need either the DUP’s 8 MPs or a combination of the Green 1/Alliance 1 and SDLP 3. I can’t see such an arrangement working for long. If the SNP ditches its non-English voting principle it better watch out for its own government in a year’s time. Far better to let the Lib Dems and the Tories form a coalition and get on with the cuts and be unpopular. The SNP can claim that Scotland voted Labour and got the Tories in a years time. And the Lib Dems may extract PR from the Tories into the bargain which will benefit the SNP next Westminster election. Forcing an independence referendum out of Gordon Brown and Nick Clegg may just not be worth it at this stage if it means sacrificing the moral high ground. I don’t think so anyway.

  18. Tris,

    Help me here please, and as a mere thicko that I am you say

    "Although technically Brown has the constitutional right to first bite at the cherry when it comes to forming a government"

    That is not true my friend, he has the right to sit until 1 is formed, as he did not get the lions share of the votes, not the first right to form as he has no vote majority.

    Forget the fact the blue boys have no overall maj as its the magic 326 figure of seats only.

    Cameron could sit with a minority govt.......political suicide but he could.

  19. If I were Clegg - perish the thought - I would form a government with either of the "big two" who would immediately reform the electoral system so that PR was firmly in place for the next election. One that was law he could then, at the first sign of disagreement, call for a vote of no confidence leading to a general election under the new rules. I would say that was Machiavellian - if I could spell it.

    Allan, don't worry about Niko, regard him as a playful puppy nipping round your ankles. He may be the village idiot but it's our village.

  20. Munguin: These other parties could not vote on the English Education Bill either, education being an area devolved in every Celtic country/province. I took it to mean that the SNP would work with Labour on issues that could be said to affect Scotland in some way and for Labour's inclusion of a Scottish perspective; they would be able to support the Labour party.

    Remember that this covers more than just the issues that are directly Scottish or British. A vote, for example, on a matter in England that had Barnet consequential payments for Scotland, could be voted on.

  21. LOTF:

    Mate you could easily have the upper hand on me here. I know zip about it. I was really only repeating what I heard someone say on the BBC (dangerous thing to do and I should know better). This guy said that as sitting PM Brown would have the first opportunity to see if he could form a government. So my statement was based on that info from the Beeb plus my own total lack of any knowledge... I defer to you.

    It seemed strange to me (Of course so does much of the old fashioned, steeped-in-tradition, time wasting that goes on at Westminster) that the outgoing PM, who should be called Caretaker PM at the moment, because he really isn’t PM, would have the whip hand... but I’ve heard it say that possession is 9/10ths of the law in England, so who knows. They have some weird old things going on down there.

    I thank you for your correction.

    Some people have said that Clegg was wrong to rule out working with Brown. I tend to disagree. If the rumours are true, it would be a near impossibility to work with a phone throwing, foul mouthed, “I’m never wrong” kind of man. It must be hard if you are in the same party, an impossibility if you are not.

    Perhaps, if Cameron will not come over with PR, Clegg will find that Mandleson is perfectly happy to ditch Brown. The noble lord admitted that the people “voted for change, just not the Tories”.

  22. Brownlie:

    For some reason it seems to take about a year to get legislation prepared for a referendum. Even in the Scottish parliament it was agreed that when Bendy said “Bring it on”, she knew perfectly well it would take a year to get the legislation together. We all know that the English parliament has all even more procedural issues going on that the Scottish one.

    Personally I can’t see why they can’t set up a committee to decide which form of PR they will propose, and give that committee a deadline of 2 weeks. (Just like happens in real life.) I mean can you imagine being given a task by your boss and saying ah well, it will take over a year and cost around £40 million, because I will have to consult widely and deliberate long?

    It could be introduced into parliament and given a week’s discussion time and at the end of that, if passed, it could go to the public within a couple of months. So 6 months maximum if these people worked hard and stopped all the sherry and late mornings and Friday afternoons off so that they could get down to the country and miss the rush.

    As for Niko.... bang on!

  23. It might not be morally correct for DUP to vote on English issues but they can neverthless just as Scottish Labour MPs have done in the past. I can't see the DUP being bothered about moral high grounds where there interests are concerned.

  24. Eventually a point will be reached where the SNPs non-english stance will kick in and when that happens if they don't vote on English stuff Gordon Brown will be defeated.

  25. Munguin

    You are right and the points you have made are almost exactly what I'm thinking.
    A Labour/Lib/SNP/PC/Green/Alliance/SDLP/Inp/Mr Niko/Tea boy, coalition would not last very long.

    The SNP and PC couldn't really vote on purely English matters and with so many parties propping Labour up, I don't think the economy or markets would like it.

    I think it would benefit the SNP if the Tories and Lib/Dems formed a coalition and it would make interesting times in the Scottish parliament.

    My instinct is the Tories will go it alone for about 6 months then call for another election.

  26. brownlie

    I would hate to be Clegg because the results say he should go with the Tories but on paper they are closer to Labour on policy.

    Are you sure Niko is the village idiot? I never new he was that intelligent? LOL!

  27. Seems to me that Scots need to stop voting Liebour

  28. Dean.

    57% of us never voted for Labour and it is the Thatcher card Labour play towards the electorate that scares many of them into voting Labour but the Tories can hardly complain at Scotland returning Labour MPs which have ultimately denied Cameron a victory.

    How many elections have happened when the South East of England votes Tory and the rest of us including the North of England voted for someone else yet we still got a Tory government?

  29. Allan: Plaid can vote on English issues as their education system etc are the same but Scotland has a different education system and its own HNS. And so on saying that the SNP could vote on these matters as a result of Barnet consequentials is stretching reality a bit far. It leads to the question what exactly have SNP MPs been doing all these years if they could have voted on these issues all along?

  30. Good points Allan and Dean.

    I wish Scots would see how silly it is for them to vote Labour. Labour us them to get power in teh south and all that that brings... first class travel to important conferences all over the world to do and say what the president of the USA tells them to do and say.

    Big houses are nice too. I mean who wouldn't want a private estate in the old style with all the staff, and all at taxpayers' expense. Chequers is braw!

    You wouldn't get that from the Scottish parliament!

    Once the election is over many of them (although not all) disappear off to the flesh pots of the English capital and indulge in all manner of pleasures...ask old Nigel about that. Never heard of anyone bonking their way through Remembrance Day, rat arsed, in the Scottish parliament.

    No fun in Edinburgh!

    At the end of the day, you cannot tell people how to vote. You and I and our respective parties have to find ways of persuading them that for more than 50 years they have had Labour representation popping off to the south of England on their behalf and doing sweet NOTHING. They are still living in grinding poverty and disgusting filth...with a system that just doesn't give a damn.

    Their lives could be better, but they won't listen to anything else than "Labour is the party for people like us". All animals are equal but some are more equal than others.

    Now I don't think that your party is or has the answer for them, and you don't think mine is or has, but we both sure as hell know that Labour hasn’t and isn't.

    The question is how to get them to understand that. I think it’s time my lot took the gloves off and really got nasty about it.

  31. While we're aw furiously jabbin' numbers intae oor calculators, an' workin' oot whit combinations it takes tae get a majority, we should keep in mind the other consequence o' coalitions.

    Some MPs fae the LibDems may not support Clegg proppin' up Cameron. All MPs are elected wi' their ain mandates. Just as the debates mis-represented the election, so treatin' the parties as unitary blocs may be a mistake.

    Ah feel some LibDems wid see another FPTP election afore they wid sit alongside tories in government.

  32. Munguin: it was Alex who said that he would be happy for our people to vote on issues with Barnet Consequentials. I can see that. If They are going to spend £10 billion on new railways, and we can get an extra billion for transport out of them, we don't want some English lot voting our billion down and us sitting there doing nothing.

    Actually, it proved the stupidity of the devolution situation that we have.

    The British parliament, sitting as the English parliament can vote themselves £10b, and the Scottish parliament benefits to £1b on the votes of English MPs. Wrong!

  33. Almost anything has a Barnet consequential or the possibility of one however remote. What happens if they want to pass a bill altering English School boards? Do the SNP not vote or do they claim there is a Barnet consequential?

    I don't see it happening anyway. Gordon Brown should go now and let the Tories get on with it.

  34. Sophia:

    A point that hasn't been raied here yet. Of course you are right. There may well be Libdems, particualrly on teh left, who wouldn't welcome any kind of liaison with the Tories, and at the same time some for the further right Tories who would trather eat thier own feet than sup with a Liberal.

    With a lot of new faces, especially in teh Tory party, it is possible that Cameron doesn't really know the minds of some of the new members of his team.

    It may all fall down, shortly after being set up.

    Scots Labour voters may see this as a stitch up of government by two posh English public school boys, forgetting the posh English Scottish public school boy who ran their party for 10 years and more stitching himself to a far far far right wing American president.

    Still the tens of thousands of dead that resulted from that particular stitch up weren't in Glasgow, so that's OK.

  35. Gordon Brown should certainly go Munguin. Even Mandleson hinted at that when he said that teh people voted for change, but not the Tories.

    Well Peter, who did they vote for.. postman Pat (anagram of "apt".. which he isn't) of was it for Milly or his bro, or Darling Alice? Or do we let you decide.

    You make a fair point about the Barnet thingies... I'm not sure how far down it goes... not very I suspect.

  36. Nothing wrong with being a Tory. The LibDems joining Cameron are vital if Cameron wants to form government - he needs to "spread responsibility around" when the cuts come.

    Personally I say let LibDem - Labour - SNP form a weak coalition government for 18 months to two years, let them make the tough cuts. Why should we Tories always have to be the 'bad guys' and clean up after socialisms incompetent mess?

    We have progressive reforms of our own we would like to see, we have investment and spending plans of our own- why do we need to enter government to cut what Liebour's economic incompetence forces us to cut?

    To hell with that, I'd rather opposition for another 18 months!

  37. Because Dean, that's exactly what they said that they would do if they got in.

    That's what they all promised. They said they would clean up the finances and they said they would clean up politics.

    Just becasue it's going to be hard shouldn't mean they won't do it.

    And Cameron wants to be PM too much to let the chance pass him by.

    Like you say, why would he want it at this time, but unless he's putting on a good show, he wants his feet under that desk and he wants it now.

    He's going to look very useless if he lets Gordo the Mad back in.





  39. Dean.....

    Calm down mate. You shouldn't have deleted your blog. It was popular and growing in readership. Why not wait to see what the outcome is?

    What do you think went wrong: How could they have made it better? What did they do that was wrong?

    You should write about that. I genuinely want to know, even if I'm not a supporter.

    I know you can't get back what you deleted but start again Dean. Don't give up. When the good guys pack up, the bad guys win.