The party line

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Thank you for raising the issue of SNP party discipline (Andrew Whitaker, Perspective, 2 September). It is indeed remarkable how the SNP manages to appear as a uniform block, be it in Holyrood or Westminster.

In my view, it’s simply unnatural that a total of 120 elected representatives are of an identical mind at all times, no matter what. Generally, members of a political party will always commit to the core principles of their party.

Yet on this common ground they will, necessarily, engage in healthy disagreement and debate on specific positions. In a democracy voters need transparency on this.

They also need the confidence that, if required, their MPs and MSPs are free to put the interest of their constituents before the party line.

In my experience as a constituent the SNP can’t be trusted on this. They rather keep internal differences out of sight of the electorate and hide them behind stereotypical and predictable language in comments, interviews and parliamentary debates.

This unhealthy and enforced conformity is one of the reasons why, for me, personally, the SNP is unelectable.

Regina Erich

Willow Row