Archive for May 6th, 2007

The SNP have one more seat at Holyrood than Labour.    But, some Holyrood seat counts were very close, and there were a large number of spoilt papers.    Where small majorities had large numbers of spoilt papers, there may be cases for legal challenges.    Labour are looking at Cunningham North where there was a majority of 48 as Kenneth Gibson SNP ousted former Labour Minister Alan Wilson.   If this is allowed, it will open the floodgates.

Alex Salmond has said there will be an inquiry into the election fiasco.    But thinking about it, he must take a share of the blame.    The SNP called themselves “Alex Salmond for First Minister” in the list of parties.    This meant that they came top of the (alphabetical) party list.    Voters, seeing a person, not a party at the top of the list were very confused.   

The process might go like this:    the voter sees the voting paper, and then does a rough scan to see what is what.    A brief ‘first look’ gives two lists, both of which are headed up by people.    Instant confusion.     Yes, the process was simple enough once you read the thing properly, but we have to face the fact that 100,000 people did not get it right.

I am suggesting that if the SNP had appeared as the “Scottish National Party” in the list of parties, then the mistakes would have been significantly fewer.     Tommy Sheridan did the same.    It might not have altered the result, but at least a few more voters would have had their voices heard, rather than be consigned to the bin.

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