Election a disaster for PM May: Sturgeon

Patrice Gainsbourg
Junho 20, 2017

As Britain risked political deadlock after May's gamble on a snap election left her short of a majority in Britain's parliament, election losses by the Scottish National Party (SNP) undermined Sturgeon's bid for a second independence vote.

But although the left-wing, secessionist party finished top in Scotland, winning 35 of its 59 seats, it was 21 down on the number it won in 2015, losing constituencies to the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats.

The SNP remains Scotland's biggest party Despite the punishing losses, including former first minister Alex Salmond as well as the party's current deputy leader Angus Robertson failing to win seats.

Also on the back foot is Scottish National Party leader and leader of the devolved Scottish government, Nicola Sturgeon, who just a year ago seemed unassailable.

Numerous votes her party lost on Thursday went to the Scottish Conservatives, the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats, all of whom have indicated an unwillingness to support another referendum.

In nearly every seat in Scotland, Ruth Davidson's party saw its share of the vote increase and the scale of her victories north of the border, despite setbacks down south, saw the Scottish Tory leader declare: "Indyref2 is dead".

British Prime Minister Theresa May said her Conservative Party, which lost its majority, will work with Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party to run the country.

Early indications show there was a "Corbyn bounce" for the party which won a total of seven seats, leading the re-elected MP for Edinburgh South, Ian Murray, to tell the audience at the Edinburgh count that: "The Scottish Labour party is back". The Corbyn-led party is predicted to win 41 per cent vote share within the 18-24 age segment.

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Ms Sturgeon's apparent willingness to reconsider her demand for an imminent Scottish independence referendum contrasts with a more bullish tone in recent months. The other parties both stood on a platform of urging the voters to reject the SNP and making this election about a referendum.

Nicola Sturgeon is eerily like May. She called an election clearly very arrogantly thinking she was going to crush the opposition, sweep everybody aside and cruise to a landslide majority.

The reports were seen as a sign that the party's Scottish leader was seeking to assert the influence of her MPs.

"Her position I think is very, very hard".

The Labour party also picked up more seats than it hoped for.

Sturgeon said she would now seek an alliance with like-minded parties to try to keep the Conservatives out of government and to keep both Scotland and the United Kingdom within the single European market as part of the Brexit talks.

But the more interesting question is why Nicola Sturgeon should want to aid the Scottish Conservatives, since the person who most obviously benefits from Kezialeaks is Ms Davidson. Sturgeon didn't see this coming until too late, when she launched a personal attack on Kezia Dugdale.

Meanwhile, Davidson said she has received assurances from Theresa May over gay rights if the Tories strike a deal with the DUP.

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