Ruth Davidson says her party can win Westminster seats in Scotland by offering an alternative to a left-leaning SNP.
She told BuzzFeed News that the Tories had been revived by the independence referendum campaign and could offer an alternative to the SNP if the party shifts to the left under Nicola, who would be, she thinks, the most left-leaning first minister that Scotland has even had. And she prophesies that the Tories could win some seats in the UK elections as a result of people turning away from the SNP towards more right wing policies in the UK.
She said that the party was targeting a number of constituencies, but refused to name them on the basis of being stung in 2010 when they reckoned they could take 12 seats and actually took 1. (Although, to be even handed, Alex Salmond also foresaw the SNP winning 20 seats at that election, and they won only 6.)
Ruth seemed to contradict herself, though, when said that she thought that the Liberals might be the real losers to a right wing surge. She may be right there. I'd have guessed that of the 11 Liberal London seats in Scotland, they will be lucky to keep 3 or 4, and some suggest that only the Alistair’s Northern Isles and Charlie Kennedy’s seat will stay faithful.
David Cameron appears to agree with his underling, saying that the referendum campaign has given activists a strong foundation from which to build support.
It’s hard to see that this is likely, although, I grant you, living in Dundee, where Conservatives are as thick on the ground as hens’ teeth, doesn't give me the best insight to the general feeling.
Someone with, presumably, even less of a feeling for this, given that he is a Conservative councillor in Salford, England said: “I think the fact a lot of socially conservative Scots who were voting SNP had their minds refocused by the referendum because they weren't backing independence.
“We saw that with results in places like Perthshire, Angus, Murray, areas that voted in SNP MPs and MSPs were voting overwhelmingly to stay in the union, and I think that’s going to help us going forwards because the SNP is lurching to the left.”
Where exactly she gets this idea, and how it ties in to her theory that the SNP is moving to the left, I have no idea.
The SNP has always said that it will do its best for the people of Scotland. On occasions that might mean voting with the Tories or Labour. But the notion that they would agree to any kind of electoral pact is surely out of the question, and even if it were not, how would being in coalition with a party that refuses to vote on England or England and Wales law be of any use to a party wishing to form a UK government?
And as the SNP, presently constituted, votes against virtually all Conservative UK policies on wars, weapons, social security, immigration, harassment of the EU, etc, etc, where would she be expecting to find any common ground?
Surely the lesson that everyone must have learned by now, is that being in coalition of any kind with the Tories rings a death knell for your party.