(Updated) SNP Ekes Out a Win in Scotland
The Scottish National party appears to have pulled off an historic coup and has overturned Labor’s 50 year dominance of Scottish politics, clearing the way for a referendum on independence.
The SNP became the largest single party in the Scottish parliament, winning 47 seats to Labor’s 46, while the Conservatives won 17 seats and the Liberal Democrats 16. Other parties won three seats.
The outcome of the outcome parliamentary election had been in doubt because of widespread reports of problems.
Election officials said that the problems, which included 100,000 paper ballots being spoiled, some absentee ballots not arriving in time and electronic counting being halted in several close races because of glitches â€“ was a â€œcock upâ€ and not a â€œconspiracy,â€ but the Tories wee predictably miffed.
As reported here yesterday, at the heart of calls for a referendum on independence â€“ which a vast majority of Scots tell pollsters that they favor and would be a logical result of an SNP victory â€” is a renewed sense of Scottish nationalism and deep dislike of being taxed and ruled by politicians in London.
The English are bitterly unhappy about a possible Scottish secession and say that it would be disastrous economically. Beyond that argument is a deep-rooted feeling that the union of England and Scotland is a primary reason for Britainâ€™s greatness. Scots and English alike once considered themselves British first, but that is no longer the case for many if not most Scots.