Sunday, 1 February 2009

Scottish voters awake and smelling the coffee

I blogged quite a bit about the budget fiasco last week. I was upbeat about how the SNP would be affected by it but in the back of my mind I was aware of something it pays never to forget in politics. Being right (and on this occasion we were) is not always a guarantee that the voters will see it that way. Perception is ALL in politics these days. People are busy and often they read nothing more than the headlines accompanied by the photographs which illustrate the journalist's own prejudices.

So whilst I had no doubt that the SNP government had approached the budget with an open mind and was genuinely attempting, within the limits of a minority government, to bring forward the best possible deal for Scotland, I wasn't too sure how the Scottish public would see it.

Therefore I am extremely proud, very happy and more than a little relieved to report some poll findings to you this morning.

YOUGOV on behalf of the Sunday Times polled 1500 voters on Thursday and Friday last week. They asked for leadership approval for each of the Scottish leaders with specific reference to how they rated the budget performance.

Greens Co-Convener Patrick Harvie down 25%
Tory Leader Annabelle Goldie was down 3%
Lib Dem Leader Tavish Scott - down 19%
Labour Leader Iain Gray -17%

And finally, Alex Salmond, First Minister and Leader of the SNP was UP by 11%!

Seems to me the people of Scotland KNOW that the SNP government would never, in a million years, do anything to damage Scotland's economy (as they were accused of last week by the unionists) - if anyone's going to do the right thing by Scotland, it's the SNP. Doing the right thing does NOT include playing politics with people's lives by voting down a budget which includes additional funding of £1.8billion in the middle of a recession.

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