Let’s face it: in some ways the UK is a divided country. Even if the Conservatives get a majority at Westminster in the upcoming elections, they are not going to get many seats in Scotland . We Celts are cursed with what the English find unforgivable: a good memory. The Poll Tax will continue to cast it’s shadow through many a generation here.
What is a Tory leader to do with us? General Wade will not avail him nowadays; it is to the more subtle, nay to darker arts Cameron feels that he must turn.
The big man has been busy. Those few (I bear no illusions) those very few who read my blog of 7th of October, 2009 would have already been alerted to Conservative efforts to get nationalists (of all colours) onside. It was very sad to me personally that this policy was confirmed with the wooing of the DUP during January this year. Being half-Irish, I am appalled at the folly and shallowness of Cameron meddling in sectarian politics which has cost thousands of lives in the past generation. While the situation in North Ireland is improving, it is still fragile as events of the past week has all too readily shown.
Why all this is important is as follows: not only is Cameron gathering support in case of a hung parliament, the Conservatives have already pledged to restrict voting in the Commons on what is defined as English matters to English MPs. Not that it will really matter to the SNP because they already have a self-imposed ban on voting on matters that they define none of Scotland ’s business. Hence the Conservatives will maintain a majority on many of the votes through the Commons and it is all the better for them if most of the Scottish MPs are from the SNP. However, this is a two-way street that also favours Alex Salmond.
Don’t take my word for it. The Scotsman newspaper has come to the same conclusion. In it’s front page story today, it states that the SNP’s best hope was a Conservative victory at the polls, because it plays into the (well deserved) antipathy for the Tories north of the border. In a survey of 1,000 individuals, about two-fifths of both Labour and Liberal Democrat voters said that they would more likely to favour independence if there was a Conservative government at Westminster .
To summarise: in Scotland the SNP wants you to vote SNP for obvious reasons. But so do the Conservatives because they don’t stand a chance here and the SNP will not vote on English matters. More votes for Cameron in parliament. And more chance of a Yes, Yes vote for Salmond’s independence poll, should it finally occur.
So if you don’t want a Conservative government, you had better not vote SNP either.