Monday, 20 October 2008

Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

I'm a bit behind on this one but I think it is important enough to make a belated contribution on Christine Grahame's calls to repatriate the remains of Mary Queen of Scots.

From what I am told, Ms Grahame is an excellent and tireless local campaigner. But those of us who aren't lucky enough to have her representing us can only be left with the impression that she is either a bit of a lunatic or a serial self-publicist.

Coming hard on the heels of the Bring Back Berwick campaign, this latest episode really does plumb the depths of bad taste and pointlessness. Scot Nats like their symbols and icons but the only hairs that will stand to attention for decayed bodies, however regal they might be, are the ones in their nostrils.

I know that minority Government will keep whips and business managers busy but surely they can spare some time to persuade Grahame to stop this nonsense. It is escapades like this that give credence to the line that Scotland will get her Independence in spite of the SNP.

What are non-nationalists (as opposed to Unionists), i.e. those that the SNP must persuade to vote for Independence, to make of it all. I can't help thinking that it simply re-inforces the idea that Independence is about being insular, narrow-minded and petty.

I've looked at the results of last year's election and I think they demonstrate that Ms Grahame's approach is fundamentally flawed. After coming a close second to the LibDems in 2003, she should have romped home in Tweeddale based on the National swings. But although her vote increased, so did that of her LibDem opponent, to the extent that she was no closer to winning.

Looking elsewhere, notably in Argyll & Bute for the most comparable electoral contest, but also in places like Stirling, Falkirk West, Livingston and Edinburgh East we see the SNP winning from far less favourable positions.

My conclusion is that while Ms Grahame gained a lot of support for her tremendous local campaigning efforts she also stirred up a great deal of antipathy with her nonsense which resulted in as big an anti-Christine shift as there was a pro-SNP shift last year.

Lucky for Jeremy!!!


agentmancuso said...

Perhaps Ms Grahame's well-publicised 'left-winger' label prevents other partys' supporters voting tactically in her favour?

Holyrood Patter said...

She was great at conference actually, pretty much single handedly won the debates on alcohol and pensioners parliament, 2 issues I had hoped to vote down