Unionist May Celebrate Their Small Moment of Joy but The Game Is Far from Over

The new Scottish Conservative party is a magnificent player, but an eight per cent increase in the vote is not just a small gain, signaling a hardening of attitudes among the public as the May elections approach, and further proof that the forecast late last year of a sweeping SNP majority and a seemingly unstoppable movement towards the Scottish independence is not an easily attainable goal.

Two polls are out this week and it’s not good news for the SNP. The polls are showing a continued pattern of downfall as the mistrust in the SNP leadership and its ambiguous handling of the Salmond inquiry is rising.  SNP’s demise can also be traced to the UK government’s fast and methodical Covid-19 vaccine programme.

The new Savanta/ComRes poll predicted the SNP would lose some of its seats, but before Conservatives get all hyped up, they would lose a seat, too. The pro-independence Greens are the ones that are expected to come back stronger with ten MSPs.

Another poll done by YouGov suggested an overall SNP majority of 13 but specified the vote continuing to drop, down four points to 52 per cent in constituencies and two to 45 per cent on the regional lists. A Panelbase survey done last week is also showing the same pattern as it put the SNP down eight on both constituency and regional votes since last year.

To be realistic, the gap is too big for there to be the slightest chance of the SNP not keeping its place as the single biggest party after the May election, but there is an opening for the opposition to ensure the minority is having more power than one or two backbencher MSPs.

About people’s view on independence, 51 per cent of people are in favour of No, when I don’t know answers are removed, compared to 53 per cent who will say Yes. According to the Times survey, the majority of people are for the Union, more than 51 per cent. Yet, Panelbase, which results has always been depicting an optimistic picture for independence, had Unionists ahead for the first time, up to three points to 47 and Yes down to 46, with seven per cent saying they have not decided yet.

According to YouGov, just 36 per cent of participants believe there should be a re-run of the 2014 independence referendum this year, whatever these numbers seem threatening for the faithful from the SNP leadership, the hopes for a quick referendum is dying this year. The sense that a normal pattern is round the corner means that any fervor for the uncertainty another poll will bring is dying out by the day.

Sadly, there is a belief in some unionist quarters that nationalism can securely be put in its box by more constitutional reform, especially ex-Labour leader Gordon Brown who has continued to bargain for a federal model which only political windbreakers and Lib Dems support.

Even the new Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar fell into the same trap with his “Broken Britain” argument the day after he was elected into office.

Attacking the opposition leader is expected from a Labour leader, but saying that the Scottish people and the British people feel the same about their government is nonsense nationalists can’t stand.

The Scottish people are quick to say the UK is not just suffering from a broken system but the system is irreparable and the only way forward for our people is through independence.

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