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Sat Jun 10, 2017, 08:15 AM

How Scottish Labour's Kezia Dugdale may have handed the election to the Tories

I've mentioned on a few threads that it can be argued that Scottish Labour (no Corbyn fans at leadership level, though they damped that down during the election) encouraged tactical voting, for the Tories where necessary, in its obsession to "get the SNP out". Here's one such example from a Sky News interview on 20 May, but the drumbeat was constant throughout the campaign.



It looks very likely that Tories also voted Labour in certain seats, such as Edinburgh South.

Imagine how different the last 24 hours might have been without those 13 Scottish Tory seats.

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Reply How Scottish Labour's Kezia Dugdale may have handed the election to the Tories (Original post)
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 OP
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #1
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #3
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #2
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #5
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #4
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #6
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #7
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #8
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #9
T_i_B Jun 2017 #10
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #11
T_i_B Jun 2017 #15
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #12
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #13
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #14
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #16
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #25
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #26
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #23
muriel_volestrangler Jun 2017 #17
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #18
muriel_volestrangler Jun 2017 #19
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #20
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #21
Denzil_DC Jun 2017 #22
Ken Burch Jun 2017 #24
Denzil_DC Jul 2017 #27

Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 08:40 AM

1. In case anyone's skeptical about an out-of-context interview quote,

here's a journalist for the Aberdeen Evening Express:




----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Adele Merson @EEadele

Last night I heard Tory activist thanking two Labour activists for the way their parties have helped one another. Odd political times...

1:49 PM - 9 Jun 2017

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #1)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 11:47 AM

3. Heh.

This is one occasion when it's paid off to paste the text of the tweet in after the link.

The journalists' tweets are now "protected", meaning she's locked her account down, possibly because of harassment.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 08:55 AM

2. Not convincing enough?

Unionist parties 'working against SNP in key seats'

Unionist parties are working together by fielding "paper candidates" in some key SNP constituencies they are looking to win at the general election, STV News has learned.

The move is aimed at ensuring the anti-SNP vote is not split in marginal seats, which could see the Nationalist candidate win in those areas.

Scottish Labour, the Scottish Conservatives and the Scottish Liberal Democrats are fielding contenders in all 59 seats but some will be "paper candidates" - they will appear on the ballot paper but will not be actively campaigning.

STV News understands all three parties are deploying the tactic in target areas including Edinburgh South, Edinburgh West, Perth and North Perthshire, East Lothian and Moray.

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1390070-unionist-parties-working-against-snp-in-key-seats/

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #2)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 11:25 PM

5. Scottish Labour STILL hasn't learned from the mistake it made in the Indyref

 

It's one thing for the party to be pro-Union in that(not sure if they could have survived in the rest of the UK if they'd been outright pro-independence; official neutrality might have been their best option), they should at least have run a distinctly Labour-only intervention there, but instead of thata, they totally discredited themselves by joining a unified "Nay" campaign).

It will be interesting to see if the Tory gains in the Scottish local elections in May hold up next year.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 11:17 PM

4. More evidence that Dugdale has to go.

 

Scottish Labour did have an obligation to try and regain seats(any party that has had a major setback in the previous election has that obligation, to its own supporters if nothing else), but what read as an alliance with the Tories was far from the way to do it.

Without her and without al the relentless and cynical anti-Corbynism within the Scottish Labour party bureaucracy, Labour would have made a much stronger recovery in Scotland and the otherwise inexplicable Scottish Tory surge that saved Theresa May from immediate defeat in the Commons would never have occurred.

It's going to be very interesting to see how Ms. May keeps a coalition that includes both the anti-gay, anti-Catholic DUP and Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson(who is not only "out' but in a long-term partnership with an Irish Catholic) together for any length of time.

I'm glad Mhairi Black was returned. She is the conscience of the Commons in many, many respects.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #4)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 11:26 PM

6. Davidson has been cosying up with the Scottish Orange Order for some time.

They were a significant proportion of their gains in councillors in certain areas a few weeks ago. They're as abhorrent as the DUP, only with less power, but she hasn't said a peep about them.

Another irony is that a lot of the Corbyn manifesto could have been cribbed from the SNP, which has actually enacted those policies (like abandoning tuition fees) in Scotland.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #6)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 11:35 PM

7. An alliance between Ruth and the Orange Order would involve some VERY delicate phraseology.

 

While I agree with you that Dugdale should not have done anything that read as an alliance, it was never a realistic expectation that Corbyn would endorse Scottish independence. Can you imagine any UK party leader hanging on to her or his job after doing that?


The SNP manifesto did likely influence Corybn's policies at some level-and it's somewhere between pathetic and delusional that Dugdale still seems to feel she has to challenge the SNP from the right, when there are virtually no SNP-Labour "swing voters" who think the SNP is too far to the left on anything.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #7)

Sat Jun 10, 2017, 11:40 PM

8. The problem's been growing in Scotland for some time, and Scottish Labour's not immune.

Orange Order elected to councils as Labour and Tory members

MEMBERS of the Orange Order have won council seats in the local elections by standing for the Labour and Tory parties, the Sunday Herald can reveal. The Orange Order has boasted that its elected councillors will work to derail a second independence referendum, the organisation’s Scottish leader said.

Grand Orange Lodge of Scotland Grand Master Jim McHarg said the organisation now wanted to stir the Unionist population against independence.

A “huge number” of Lodge supporters are Tories, McHarg said, as he praised Ruth Davidson for basing her council election campaign on opposition to a second referendum.

However, McHarg said most of the Protestant Order’s members are Labour supporters as he revealed the organisation’s attempt to extend its political influence. He said the majority of Orange Lodge members who had successfully been elected as councillors were Labour, but added that at least one Tory had also been voted in.

http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/15270068.Orange_Order_elected_to_councils_as_Labour_and_Tory_members/

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I evidently lack the writing chops to be able to express just how cynical and useless Davidson and Dugdale are.

Davidson's approval ratings started to slide towards the end of the GE campaign despite the ridiculously easy ride the media give her, but the damage had been done by then. I haven't seen a recent poll, but not that long ago, for Dugdale it was more a case of "Kezia who ...?"

Labour and the Tories have also formed coalitions to lock the SNP out of council administrations in a few cases.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #7)

Sun Jun 11, 2017, 12:39 AM

9. A few more examples since I have the tabs open on my browser:





-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
WILLY QUIT? SNP call for disgraced Stirlingshire Tory councillor Alastair Majury who bragged about his penis size on dating site to stand down

Nats also called for Tory councillor Robert Davies to resign after it emerged he posted a number of racist tweets likening black people to cannibals

https://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/news/politics/988415/snp-tory-tories-alastair-majury-robert-davies-penis-stirlingshire/
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tory leader Ruth Davidson also posed with hard-right British nationalist John Buchan last week. Buchan shared a post containing the lines “up to our knees in fenian blood” and “fuck your Pope and Vatican.”

...

A wider theme of Tory abuse and extremism came to light during the Council Elections campaign, which included links to far-right groups, xenophobia, anti-refugee campaigns, and Ukip among the revelations.

https://www.commonspace.scot/articles/10990/double-blow-tories-suspend-councillors-anti-catholic-and-race-bigotry-scandal
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
A Labour councillor in Stirling has been reported as saying that he’ll happily vote Tory on Thursday – and a senior Labour source this week confirmed that the party was effectively standing aside to try and get Tory MPs elected in seats across Scotland, simply clearing the path for Theresa May to return to Downing Street.

http://www.thehighlandtimes.com/news/2017/06/05/labour-vote-risks-letting-in-tory-mp%E2%80%99s/
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #4)

Sun Jun 11, 2017, 06:03 PM

10. I'm not sure there's much appetite for replacing Dugdale

From what I've seen online, many Labour supporters seem quite satisfied that they gained seats off the SNP in Scotland. Although the need to bulk out their Scottish platform with stuff besides Unionism is being mentioned.

It will be interesting to see if the Westminster Tories turn on Ruth Davidson though. She appears to have said no to the "Theresa May uber alles" Tory campaign that backfired in England, and reaped the electoral benefits for this, and Tory brexshitters are sure to resent her making demands.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #10)

Sun Jun 11, 2017, 07:50 PM

11. If they turn on her though, the government falls...

 

And there's a second election for which the Westminster Tories will be blamed.

For that lot, it's damned if they do, damned if they don't.

BTW, how do you think the internal power dynamics within Labour will change, given that Corbyn managed a 30 seat gain in which he was treated with greater disloyalty and disrespect within his own party than any previous party leader in UK history?

Would you agree that everyone within the party who was still trying to force Corbyn to stand down AFTER THE ELECTION WAS CALLED should now unreservedly apologize for doing so, and that any anti-Corbyn MP who won't do that,who still can't accept Corbyn as leader and who can't bring themselves to stop trying to force him out of the leadership should agree to stand down at the next election?


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #11)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 02:43 AM

15. I think Corbyn is pretty safe TBH

He had a lot of assistance from an abysmal Tory campaign yes, but to have won over young voters in such numbers has silenced the doubters.

The challenge for Labour is to get more unified and keep the heat on the Tories, who are in a horrendous mess of their own making.

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #10)

Sun Jun 11, 2017, 08:09 PM

12. See, that's one of Scottish Labour's major problems right there.

It's all gang up with the Tories and Lib Dems to bash the SNP on devolved issues and hyped-up hysteria about a referendum issue (that had already been voted through at Holyrood) at a Westminster election at all costs, when their efforts in alliance with the Scottish Tories and Lib Dems sabotaged their own party's prospects of coming a lot closer to ousting the Tories at Westminster. They came away from it with 7 seats, the Tories won 13.

Not that I expect the rump of Labour that's left up here to join the dots. They weren't thinking UK-wide because they didn't support Corbyn, and thought Labour had barely a chance of surviving, let alone reducing the Tories' majority to a wafer.

Let's hope the new intake of MPs they're sending down south are better than the last lot ("the feeble fifty", which by all accounts (from English Labour MPs no less) were useless and too obsessed with internal party jockeying to be effective.

ETA: Oh, and:




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Arthur Scargill @ScargillArthur

The mentality of the anti-referendum protest voters in Scotland revealed: if they are moronic enough to vote Conservative, it says it all.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

From the same Twitter thread:

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #4)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 12:18 AM

13. Here's Ruth "Paper Tiger" Davidson

- who's currently the darling of a number of English Tories who know very little about her apart from the media hype so far, but are desperate to find some way for her to join the Westminster cabinet or even, in their wildest dreams, become prime minister - being interviewed about the prospect of the DUP alliance. She fancies she's going to force May to go for a softer brexit and "champion Scotland's interests".

Once she can't bang on continually about her opposition to an independence referendum, she's utterly lost. Don't blink towards the end of this interview or you'll miss her exiting stage left at impressive speed mid-question:




Meanwhile In Scotia @MeanwhileScotia

Watch @RuthDavidsonMSP run away from a difficult line of questioning from @Channel4News

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #13)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 02:05 AM

14. Actually, she exits stage RIGHT...as you'd expect a Tory(or Snagglepuss) to do.

 

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #14)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 07:18 AM

16. My mistake! n/t

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #16)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 10:21 PM

25. It's all right...I've done theatre off and on for years.

 

things like that stay with you.

How's the weather there today?

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #25)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 10:57 PM

26. I did a bit in my youth, but sleep's been a bit short the last few days

since the whole country went whackadoodle.

The weather's been crap for the last week or so. We've been making up for an unbelievable couple of months' drought in the late spring.

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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #14)


Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 09:31 AM

17. The SNP got lucky - they won a lot of their seats with tiny majorities

Taking "500 or less" as a "tiny majority" - basically less than 1% of the total voting in a constituency - there are 31 in the UK. Of those, 12 are in Scotland; of those, the SNP won 8, where Labour was 2nd in 5, Tories in 2, and Lib Dems in 1. The SNP came second in 4 of these seats - losing to Labour in 3, and the Tories in 1.

(It seems to me there were a lot of close results, so I've made a spreadsheet of them. Plaid Cymru was lucky too - of their 4 seats, 2 have tiny majorities).

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #17)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 10:06 AM

18. ALL the parties got lucky, except when they didn't.

Tactical voting's a lottery - you've no guarantee how voters are going to switch, no matter how much attempted co-ordination goes on behind the scenes. The SNP generally got unlucky on that particular roll of the dice.

A number of people have hashed together analyses showing that a few hundred/thousand votes the other way in certain constituencies would have put Corbyn in Downing Street, for example. I'm sure if you cherrypicked constituencies, you could show the Tories being returned with a resounding majority for the sake of similar numbers.

It's just a quirk of our FPTP system, but it will make the next election pretty excruciating for just about everybody. That alone is likely to affect voting patterns.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #18)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 10:24 AM

19. Yeah, but I'm not cherrypicking - that was all close seats (nt)

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #19)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 11:31 AM

20. Yeah, but saying a certain party "got lucky" is a bit meaningless.

There's a reason why polls are expressed in confidence intervals (not that anybody in the media and general public pays them much attention).

If we could run the same polls multiple times in a hypothetical universe (which the best polling models actually do in simulations - the Monte Carlo method), sometimes the SNP would have gotten more votes and more seats, sometimes less. Same for all the parties. You could as easily claim the SNP got unlucky for it to be so close in those seats, and it would be as meaningless. If you look at vote share, you could argue they were unlucky or lucky depending whether you're a glass-half-full type or not, and that wouldn't mean much either.

They're now marginals, some extreme marginals (21-vote and 2-vote majorities in a couple of cases).

After the last utterly exceptional SNP landslide election and absurd swings, were they safe SNP seats? Nope. I don't think anybody sensible, especially the SNP, thought that. I actually don't think there's a safe seat in the whole of Scotland right now, for any party - we're in that much flux.

Will they be marginals in the next election? On paper, yes. But this was almost as much a wave election as the last one for the SNP and the dynamics are likely to be rather different, so I'd be wary of placing any bets.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #20)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 12:10 PM

21. OK, to illustrate some of what I'm saying here,

Muriel, you'll know by now that I'm not daft enough to make election predictions (not to say that I don't make assumptions and results like the EU referendum and the scale of SNP losses in this last election didn't surprise me, of course). But I did do a bit of an analysis of my own Westminster seat on an earlier thread:

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
{Brendan O'Hara, Argyll & Bute}

He came from nowhere (in historical party standing terms in this constituency) to win the seat with an 8,000-plus majority (44.3%) at the last election from three-term (and OK at a constituency level, but pretty useless in Parliament) Lib Dem Alan Reid (27.9%), who'd taken over the seat from another three-term Lib Dem in 2001.

O'Hara's been fine as far as I'm concerned. It's a tough call for any MP in this constituency, getting round a large, disparate and in parts rather remote area while maintaining a presence at Westminster.

The Tories were a distant third at the 2015 election, with 7,733 votes (14.9%) to Labour's fourth-placed 5,394 (10.4%).

The other parties have been slow to declare candidates, only Labour's Michael Kelly (who I've never seen or heard of before) standing against him so far.

His previous Lib Dem opponent Reid took the loss hard and has been fishing around for a political role at various levels since, and might have been in the running to contest his old seat, but he finally won an Argyll & Bute council seat in last week's election.

His previous Tory opponent, Alastair Redman (another who's been a regular contender for various roles in the area over the years), also won a seat in last week's election.

O'Hara's prospects depend on turnout, who decides to stand against him and who tactical voters decide has the best chance of defeating him.

In 2015, UKIP only got 1,311 votes (2.5%), so there's not much slack to gain from them for his future Tory opponent. The Lib Dems have historical strength in the constituency, but this seemed to evaporate at the last election, and there's been no sign of a resurgence at Scottish national level. They might be more likely Tory switchers, and possibly vice versa, but note that the Tories' total 2015 vote was less than O'Hara's majority over the Lib Dems with their sitting MP. It remains to be seen whether Labour voters would be willing to switch to Tory or Lib Dem in an effort to unseat him.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

And here's how it panned out, from that same thread:

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
O'Hara was re-elected, but the Tories gained a lot of vote share to run second, at the expense of the Lib Dems who were a distant third. Labour came a slightly more distant but not disgraceful fourth - which is remarkable since their candidate didn't start campaigning at all till the last couple of weeks of the election due to prior commitments and had a habit of taking the huff in hustings and stomping out when challenged, on one occasion calling a would-be constituent a "fat bastard".

Ironically, the Corbyn effect might have helped the SNP in this constituency - Labour's vote held up, rather than defecting en masse to vote tactically (what sort of unreasoning hatred would make a Labour supporter envisage voting Tory, I can't imagine, but it looks like it happened elsewhere).
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Most of the time, an 8,000-plus majority in a seat like this would class it as "safe", but did I sound like I classed it as such?

Look at what happened to the Lib Dem, Tory and Labour votes, then tell me where those extra Tory 2017 votes came from (in this instance it looks like it wasn't from Labour, which probably saved O'Hara's seat - thanks, Mr Corbyn?):

2015:

SNP (Brendan O'Hara) 22,959 votes Vote Share: 44.3% Net change: +25.3%

Lib Dems (Alan Reid) 14,486 votes Vote Share: 27.9% Net change: −3.7%

Conservatives (Alastair Redman) 7,733 votes Vote Share: 14.9% Net change: −9.1%

Labour (Mary Galbraith) 5,394 votes Vote Share: 10.4% Net change: −12.3%

UKIP (Caroline Santos) 1,311 votes Vote Share: 2.5% Net change: (didn't stand before, UKIP didn't stand in 2017 either)

Majority: 8,473 votes (16.3%)
Turnout 51,883 (75.3%) +8.0%
SNP gain from Lib Dem
Swing +14.5%

2017:

SNP (Brendan O'Hara) 17,304 votes Vote Share: 36.0% Net change: -8.3%

Conservatives (Gary Mulvaney) 15,976 votes Vote Share: 33.2% Net change: +18.3%

Lib Dems (Alan Reid) 8,745 votes Vote Share: 18.2% Net change: -9.7%

Labour (Michael Kelly) 6,044 votes Vote Share: 12.6% Net change: +2.2%

Majority: 1,328 votes (2.8%)
Turnout: 48,069 (71.5%) -3.8%
SNP hold
Swing: -13.3%

There are obviously factors that make this seat unique, like any other (O'Hara's strongly anti-Trident in the constituency where it's based not being the least of them). In view of the Labour candidate's habit of storming out of hustings when accused of being a paper candidate, his vote held up pretty well.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #21)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 01:19 PM

22. A bit more analysis of some of the dynamics in Scotland (including my Argyll & Bute constituency)

from a blog I've mentioned before, Wings Over Scotland, which paints a picture of a Lib Dem death wish in favour of the Tories with no reciprocality.

This ignores any Labour-Tory tactical voting. One significant seat where there's evidence of Tory-Labour tactical voting is Labour MP (and rabid anti-Blairite, unless he's changed his tune suddenly) Ian Murray's seat, Edinburgh South, where the evidence is that Tories lent him their support in droves in 2015 to give Labour its only seat, and this was consolidated in 2017:

The cannon fodder

The Scottish Liberal Democrats have been a drastically reduced force in Westminster politics ever since they were all but wiped out (along with most of their UK colleagues) in the 2015 election. But there were still sizeable areas of the country where they retained a strong presence, even when they’d lost their seats.

That changed dramatically last Thursday.

Because across Scotland, from John O’Groats to Berwick, Lib Dems simply hurled their bodies in front of the SNP’s guns and allowed the Tories to climb up their fallen bodies to attack the Nat battlements – sometimes successfully, sometimes falling just short as their Lib Dem patsies died in vain.

Of 11 seats won by the Lib Dems in 2010, four are now back in their hands, although the only one where they substantially increased their vote on 2015 was (dismayingly) Orkney & Shetland. We looked at the other seven to see if there was any sign of a Lib Dem revival in the wake of the SNP’s decline, and the results were startling.

https://wingsoverscotland.com/the-cannon-fodder/

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #17)

Mon Jun 12, 2017, 07:03 PM

24. Could you pm me that spreadsheet? Thanks.

 

n/t.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Sat Jul 22, 2017, 09:53 AM

27. Lest anyone think this was purely post-poll petulance on my part,

here's a report from Scottish Labour's Campaign for Socialism:

Helicopter view of the 2017 GE results: A Tale of Two Parties

...

Labour Votes and the missed opportunities

Scottish Labour’s framing of the election around the SNP and the constitution, avoided robustly challenging the Tories on their record in government at Westminster. Feedback from the doorstep was indicating people were fed up with the SNP; however, Labour’s disunity – especially with senior figures in Scottish Labour’s leadership team being openly hostile towards Jeremy Corbyn – turned people off. Moreover, the Scottish Tories managed to decouple themselves from David Cameron’s and Teresa May’s governments, and present themselves as being an effective opposition to the SNP. By not challenging effectively the Tories’ record in government since 2010 and focussing on the SNP, Scottish Labour’s strategists – still in the Better Together mind-set – tacitly oversaw the Scottish Tories increase their votes by approximately 5,500 in the average constituency (the Tories increased their votes across GB by 21%)

...

The ‘Jeremy Corbyn’ effect saw the Labour vote increase by over one-third across GB (38%); however, in Scotland, where the Scottish Party led an anti-SNP campaign with the ‘send Nicola a message’ narrative that almost silenced Jeremy’s message of ‘for the many’, only saw a very small increase of 1% .... Yet, this is better than many pollsters predicted at the start of the campaign. The more positive landing place is generally accepted due to Jeremy Corbyn’s national campaign.

After 15 months of a hostile PLP and media, the turning point of the campaign was the leaked draft manifesto and Jeremy Corbyn talking directly to voters, Jeremy’s campaign cut through the Scottish Labour message. This saw a surge of people opting to vote Labour for a better future. Unfortunately, by the time the momentum gathered the majority of the postal votes were cast. Yet, this ‘Corbyn bounce’ in a last few weeks of the campaign coupled with the collapse of SNP majorities saw an additional six Scottish Labour MPs returned to Westminster and many new marginals.

...

Moving forward

The priority must be keeping the momentum of Jeremy’s campaign going and planning ways to sustain this for the forthcoming 18 months; especially, given the SNP’s concern that after another snap general election they could be down to three MPs. Thus, Scottish Labour activists need to work together to engage communities and voters to deliver for the many and getting rid of this Tory government for the few.

http://ht.ly/ZXJ530dM29G


This evidence that Scottish Labour's campaign tactics (not to mention general uselessness) held back Labour's progress in Scotland put the cat among the pigeons in Scottish Labour's upper echelons. Tensions between Kezia Dugdale and MSP Neil Findlay, who just happens to be Convener of the Campaign for Socialism, are no secret, but seldom spill out in public.

But spill out it did:



If you want an insight into the anti-SNP partisanship among the Scottish media, here's the Record's leader about it:


Scottish Labour's left are hell-bent on sabotaging the party

...

Attacking Kezia Dugdale’s record for focusing too much on the SNP in Scotland to the degree that she facilitated a Tory revival is a message from planet Zog, transmitted via tinfoil helmets to the Scottish Campaign for Socialism.

For Labour’s left to try to mug Dugdale for their own serial electoral failures displays a lack of political nous which advertises their own unsuitability for leadership.

Dugdale, a better leader than Labour deserved when they were on their knees, can hold the ring against the SNP in what will become a real battle to the death in the west of Scotland over the next few years.

Corbyn, an authentic voice of radical Labour values, adds to the mix in Scotland. Together they can achieve great things, divided they fall.

http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/politics/scottish-labours-left-hell-bent-10849152


There's some special pleading here, because the Record, along with the rest of the media, did sterling work during the election propelling Dugdale's "Better Together/vote Tory to get the SNP out" message.

But it looks like Findlay would have preferred it hadn't spilt out:




Chris Musson ✔ @camusson

MSP Neil Findlay is on holiday & pleading ignorance over press release sent out from the left-wing Scottish Labour faction he's convener of

Chris Musson ✔ @camusson


Hmm. Scottish Labour's Campaign for Socialism (convener @NeilFindlay_MSP) has put out statement saying Scottish party is holding Corbyn back


Corbyn's strategy in the face of this evidence? Guess.


Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn targets 18 SNP seats in next bid for Downing Street

Jeremy Corbyn is targeting 18 seats held by the SNP in his bid to win the keys to Downing Street.

The Labour leader will tour key marginal seats in Scotland next month as he continues to prepare for the possibility of another election.

The party stunned observers in last month’s general election by winning six seats from the SNP and slashing the nationalists’ majority in constituencies across the country.

Strategists believe they could pick up several more Scottish seats in a future election.

http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/politics/labour-leader-jeremy-corbyn-targets-10841237




It's a "well, duh" point that taking seats from the SNP will do nothing to cut into the Tories' majority at Westminster, but there we have it.

Conspicuously absent from any of these target seats are any that the Election Polling site highlights as potential Tory/Labour marginals, such as Renfrewshire East, Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, and Aberdeen South, nor any where Labour will have to fend off challenges from the Tories in its newly won seats, like East Lothian.

We'll see whether Corbyn can mobilize sizeable crowds on the Scottish leg of his wee tour. On his past form when criticizing the SNP's record in government during visits up here, if his pants aren't aflame by the end of it, I'll be amazed.

And he may well let slip some of his customary bloopers that expose the historic divisions between UK Corbynite Labour and Scottish Dugdale Labour. It's always a wee bit embarrassing when he champions policies the SNP have already enacted in Scotland when Scottish Labour have bitterly opposed them.

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