Election purpose

After Sunday night’s Election Panel broadcast from Edinburgh we now know from Nicola Sturgeon that independence is not an issue in the election, which must come as rather a shock to all the SNP foot soldiers who thought it was the only reason for the party’s existence.

We also know that despite Nicola Sturgeon kindly offering Ed Miliband the keys to Number 10, she is ready and willing to instruct her MPs to vote down a Budget from a minority Labour government if she does not like what’s in it.

Since the Tories will vote against any Labour Budget it means that the 30, 40 or 50 newly elected SNP MPs will, some time after the new session of Parliament opens, gladly walk into the division lobby with their sworn enemies the Tories. Since you can hardly get more serious in parliamentary terms than voting down a Budget the Tories will no doubt then put down a motion of no confidence.

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Since Nicola Sturgeon has promised she will never do anything to let the Tories into power she will have to instruct her troops to oppose it.

One can foresee many farcical situations in parliament: crucial votes coming up with the Tory backbenchers roaring at the SNP members: “Vote with us!” and all the other members roaring at them: “Vote with the Tories!”

Jock Houston