Scotland made international headlines last year, with a referendum on independence held on 18 September 2014. Although the referendum bid was ultimately unsuccessful, with 55% of voters rejecting the proposal, Scottish politics remains important within a UK-wide context, particularly in light of the 2015 General Election.
The independence issue was to be ‘settled for a generation’ in the event of a no vote but it remains important for supporters of the SNP, whose ranks have grown dramatically since the referendum and in the minds of the SNP’s political rivals.
Despite the defeat at the polls, the party appears set to make its mark at the centre, registering strong results and perhaps influencing the process of government formation.
Although we would be foolish to make predictions several weeks in advance of the General Elections, polling has indicated that the SNP might secure 35+ of Scottish seats. This historic result would present both opportunities, to pursue progressive policies and to influence the direction of a minority government, but also challenges for a party which has historically had limited representation at Westminster.
Convening in July, we will be able to view these events in perspective. We’ll go beyond the text books to look at political advertising, manifestos, and events as they unfold.
Coree Brown- Tutor Scottish Politics in the 21st Century