Monday, May 9, 2011

Victorious SNP

The 2011 Scottish Parliament general election saw a triumphant Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP) swept back to power in such emphatic style that they are going to put the break-up of Britain firmly on the political agenda for the first time in 300 years. The Independent on Saturday reported that Alex Salmond (above photo), the Scottish First Minister who led the Scottish nationalists to the best result in their history, had immediately declared his intention to bring forward a referendum on Scottish independence. SNP secured 69 of the Scottish Parliament's 129 seats – the first majority for any party since devolution in 1999.

The Labor Party, which has treated Scotland as their most trustworthy fiefdom for much of the past century, suffered their worst result north of the border for more than 80 years as the SNP took seat after seat in the Labor heartlands of Glasgow, Edinburgh, Lanarkshire and Renfrewshire. But the SNP victory was fuelled mainly by the extraordinary collapse of the Liberal Democrat vote. The Liberal Democrats went into the election with 16 seats at Holyrood but finished with only five.

The Tories, already down to their core supporters, saw their share of the vote dip but held their ground in the face of the SNP onslaught, starting with 17 seats and ending up with 15. In many areas, the Labor vote held up well, but with Liberal Democrat supporters switching to the SNP, Labor was swept aside.

This result affords the best chance for Scots to decide whether they wish to secede from Britain at some time in the next five years. Imagine Scotland as an independent nation – this is now possible!

Celtic return to within a point of SPL leaders Rangers after a workmanlike 2-0 win over Kilmarnock. It took until added time at the end of the first half for Celtic to break down the latter, when Scott Brown headed in from six yards (45+1). Then, Kris Commons sealed the points with a wonderful strike on 68 minutes.

Arsenal’s lingering title dream ended when Stoke secured a well-earned victory over the Gunners – they won 3-1 in a most deserving manner.

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