Scotland European Region

2014 Election
2014 Results
1. Ian Hudghton (SNP) 389503 29% (-0.1%)
2. David Martin (Labour) 348219 25.9% (+5.1%)
3. Ian Duncan (Conservative) 231330 17.2% (+0.4%)
4. Alyn Smith (SNP) (194752)
5. Catherine Stihler (Labour) (174110)
6. David Coburn (UKIP) 140534 10.5% (+5.2%)
. (Scottish Green) 108305 8.1% (+0.8%)
. (Liberal Democrats) 95319 7.1% (-4.4%)
. (Britain First) 13639 1% (n/a)
. (BNP) 10216 0.8% (-1.7%)
. (No2EU) 6418 0.5% (-0.4%)
Current sitting MEPs
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Ian Hudghton (SNP) Former leader of Angus council. MEP for North-East Scotland 1998-1999, for Scotland since 1999.
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David Martin (Labour) Born 1954, Edinburgh. Educated at Libertson High School. Lothian regional councillor 1982-1984. MEP for Lothian 1984. MEP for Scotland since 1999.
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Ian Duncan (Conservative) Born in Alyth. Educated at Alyth High School and St Andrews University. Public affairs professional and former Scottish Parliamentary clerk. Contested Aberdeen South 2003 Scottish election. MEP for Scotland since 2014.
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Alyn Smith (SNP) Born 1973, Glasgow. Educated at Leeds and Heidelberg Universities. Commercial lawyer. MEP for Scotland since 2004.
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Catherine Stihler (Labour) Born 1973, Bellshill. Educated at Coltness High School and St Andrews University. Former researcher for Anne Begg. MEP for Scotland since 1999. Contested Angus 1997, Dunfermline and West Fife by-election 2006.
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David Coburn (UKIP) Born in Glasgow. Businessman. Contested Old Bexley and Sidcup 2010. MEP for Scotland since 2014.

Full candidates for the 2014 European election are here.

2009 Election
2009 Results
1. Ian Hudghton (SNP) 321007 29.1% (+9.4%)
2. David Martin (Labour) 229853 20.8% (-5.6%)
3. Struan Stevenson (Conservative) 185794 16.8% (-0.9%)
4. Alyn Smith (SNP) (160504)
5. George Lyon (Liberal Democrat) 127038 11.5% (-1.6%)
6. Catherine Stihler (Labour) (114927)
. (Scottish Green) 80442 7.3% (+0.5%)
. (UKIP) 57788 5.2% (-1.5%)
. (BNP) 27174 2.5% (+0.8%)
. (Socialist Labour) 22135 2% (n/a)
. (Christian) 16738 1.5% (n/a)
. (Scottish Socialist) 10404 0.9% (-4.3%)
. Duncan Robertson (Independent) 10189 0.9% (n/a)
. (No2EU) 9693 0.9% (n/a)
. (Jury Team) 6257 0.6% (n/a)
Current sitting MEPs
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Ian Hudghton (SNP) Former leader of Angus council. MEP for North-East Scotland 1998-1999, for Scotland since 1999.
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David Martin (Labour) Born 1954, Edinburgh. Educated at Libertson High School. Lothian regional councillor 1982-1984. MEP for Lothian 1984. MEP for Scotland since 1999.
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Struan Stevenson (Conservative) Born 1948, Ballantrae. Educated at West of Scotland Agricultural College. Formerly director of a family farmying and tourism company. Girvan councillor 1970-1974, Kyle and Carrick councillor 1972-1992. Contested Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley 1987, Edinburgh South 1992, Dumfries 1997. North-East Scotland European by-election 1999. MEP for Scotland since 1999.
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Alyn Smith (SNP) Born 1973, Glasgow. Educated at Leeds and Heidelberg Universities. Commercial lawyer. MEP for Scotland since 2004.
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George Lyon (Liberal Democrat) Born 1956, Rothesay. Educated at Rothesay Academy. Farmer. MSP for Argyll and Bute 1999-2007. Deputy Minister for Finance and Parliamentary business in the Scottish executive 2005-2007.
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Catherine Stihler (Labour) Born 1973, Bellshill. Educated at Coltness High School and St Andrews University. Former researcher for Anne Begg. MEP for Scotland since 1999. Contested Angus 1997, Dunfermline and West Fife by-election 2006.
Comments - 646 Responses on “Europe Scotland”
  1. At present it looks as if the SNP will remain in minority government after 2021 but the pro independence SNP and Scottish Greens will no longer command a majority making it difficult for them to legislate Indyref II.

  2. Still 4 years to go! Whose saying it’ll even be the SNP in government by then?

  3. This is usually why they ask the question if there were an election tomorrow, until tomorrow is polling day who knows if the SNP will remain a minority

  4. Catalan independence referendum odds –

    1/16 to Leave Spain
    7 to Remain part of Spain

  5. I hesitate to say any bet is free money, but surely 1-16 about one side to win a referendum when the other side surely won’t participate must be close to being just that.

  6. I just cant see Catalonia ever being an independent country, not because I don’t think the pro Indy group might not win a referendum (they would appear to be firm favourites at present) but Spain simply CANNOT allow it.

    Catalonian independence from Spain is nothing like Scottish Independnance from the UK, the UK can survive without Scotland (albeit in a diminished state) Spain though cannot survive without Catalonia which remains by far the wealthiest province and the home of its largest city and financial centre Barcelona. Spain is already on very shaky economic ground, remove Catalonia and the country is pretty much headed the way of Greece. The Spanish gov know this and thus they just can’t allow Catalonia to leave.

  7. Here’s the thing – the Spanish government is currently doing every thing it can to make Catalans hate them. Their behaviour is only pouring fuel on the separatists’ fire.

  8. The polling suggests a proper referendum would be a close result. Too close for the anti-secession side to call the nats bluff and allow a legally binding vote.

  9. Polltroll
    “the Spanish government is currently doing every thing it can to make Catalans hate them. Their behaviour is only pouring fuel on the separatists’ fire”

    I agree but the Spanish Gov are in a tricky pace, what other choice do they have? If the UK has proven anything in recent years its that referendums don’t settle issues, they only make them more salient thus I can see why Spain is doing everything it can to stop a referendum.

    Its only option then is to do what other countries do and curtail separatist sentiment by essentially moving people around, they can do that via the tin pot dictator way (China flooding its eastern provinces with Han Chinese, Kazakhstan building a brand new capital city in the ethnically Russian North etc) or the more enlightened way that ourselves and Canada did. Parts of Scotland (the Borders and Edinburgh primarily) have a massive English minority and in Canada/Quebec South Western Montreal is dominated by anti independence Anglophones, in both instances this “loyal” minority swung the pendulum against separation thus if I was Spain I’d be subsidizing Spaniards to move in their droves into Catalonia and hope that dilutes the issue.

  10. Maybe before resorting to nationwide social engineering which could further unbalance the national economy, the government might first seek to persuade the natives by reasoned debate?

  11. Polltroll
    “the government might first seek to persuade the natives by reasoned debate?”

    How very naïve that you still believe that their is room for “reasoned debate” in our new “alt facts” world 😉

  12. The Spanish have never exactly been democratic or consistent about territorial claims over the British, just look at how they govern Ceuta and Melilla over the Britain’s governance of Gibraltar (we’ve come under a lot of international scrutiny over our governance of Gibraltar and have given them multiple votes on the constitution; the Spanish have not done the same even though Ceuta and Melilla are virtually the same reason why the Spanish claim Gibraltar as part of their country relative to Morocco).

    Basque and Catalonia are other examples, where in Britain the government is reasonable with those seeking self-determination.

  13. Regarding who would win a referendum supported by Spain and the opposition: it would certainly be a closely drawn thing, though Spain are doing everything they can to further the nationalist cause right now.

  14. I have been following recent opinion polls in Scotland with two showing SNP Gains in 5 Conservative seats (Angus, Ayr/ Carrick, Gordon, Ochil/ South Perthshire and Stirling).

    Of the two, one shows a tiny SNP to Lab swing (allowing Labour to take Glasgow East and Glasgow South West) and the other a tiny Lab to SNP swing (allowing the SNP to regain Kirkcaldy/ Cowdenbeath and Rutherglen/ Hamilton West).

    Were a general election to fall sometime soon these are the changes I would expect to see on the Scottish political landscape.

    I could see the Conservatives being more entrenched in Gordon as Alex Salmond’s personal vote disappears but there may also be an unwinding of the anti Salmond vote too back to the Lib Dems to compensate.

    Banff & Buchan also fell on a huge swing. What is notable about this constituency is that this is the only YES/ LEAVE constituency in the Scotland and the SNP’s current pro-EU stance has caused the SNP difficulties in a constituency you would expect to be beyond the Conservatives reach.

    Much will depend on whether Ruth Davidson’s bubble bursts.

  15. Con/SNP marginals are interesting ones to watch because I get the feeling that the SNP and the Conservatives are both weakening at the moment. The SNP may be at 40%+ in the polls but they didn’t turn out in June did they – so why should we expect any different now? I feel that their current level of support is overstated. Unionists voted more than nationalists, and a few nationalists even voted for Labour (possibly because the Scottish Greens didn’t stand candidates). And with Richard Leonard now in charge, that only makes Labour more attractive to these voters.

    My instinct is more that Con/SNP marginals are fairly static as both weaken slightly, with Lab gaining ground in the central belt.

  16. I don’t think theyre even at +40 at least at Westminister. The last three polls have had them below 40

  17. Polls generally place the SNP at 38 and 39% up on the 36/ 37% at the general election with Labour up by the same amount. By contrast the Scottish Conservatives are down by around 4% points.

    It’s the SNP/ Lab gap that remains static and the swing from Conservative is now so significant that of their 13 seats they are now projected to lose 5 and by a substantial margin in the most marginal of Stirling. Regarding polls overestimating a given party….polls in the run up to the 2011 Holyrood elections overestimated Labour support.

  18. Personally if the government collapses and there is another general election, the SNP would return a similar number of MP’s to 2017 with any Labour gains from the SNP being offset by SNP gains from Conservative.

    The net effect would be Labour pushing the Conservatives into third place in Scotland both in seats and vote share.

  19. That would make forming a gov for the tories almost impossible

  20. Does anybody know what has happened to http://www.Scotland.Votes.com?

    It had a great projection model for the Scottish Parliament but has it had serious security problems for past few months or is my anti virus software too sensitive?

  21. No my phone isnt having it

  22. Sad…..such a great site…

  23. Survation Westminster

    SNP 39%
    Lab 27%
    Con 24%
    LD 7%

    Seats –

    SNP 45 (+9)
    Con 8 (-5)
    LD 3 (NC)
    Lab 3 (-4)

    Labour reduced to Edinburgh South, East Lothian and Coatbridge.

  24. Labour, Conservatives and Lib Dem scores all broadly in line with YouGovs poll. SNP a few points ahead.

  25. The thing about Scotland is that there are so many knife-edge marginals that you can’t extrapolate particularly reliably from percentages to seat totals. I’m highly sceptical that a 2% rise in vote share would scoop up an additional nine seats for the SNP, even if that’s what would happen on a uniform swing.

  26. The SNP have been defeated in Holyrood over the Offensive Behaviour Act, which criminalised football fans for offensive chants.

    Every single SNP MSP voted to keep the bill, every other MSP, including the Greens, voted to repeal it. It’s reportedly the first time a private member’s bill has ever defeated the Scottish government.

  27. Good to see the Greens assert their status as an independent party, and on exactly the sort of issue (free speech) that liberal people like me need the left to be strong about.

  28. Scottish Labour has slipped in the opinion polls but they could still in theory end up anywhere between 1 and 20 seats at the next election. Their main problem is the residual solidity of the SNP vote i.e. 35% or so is probably based mainly on the under 40 vote vote and people who are emotionally attached to independence as opposed to just disillusioned left wingers.

    It’ll be most interesting to see how the Tory vote behaves in SNP-Lab marginals at the next election and also if pro EU unionists vote tactically for the SNP in Stirling etc (that’s probably the Tories only extremely vulnerable seat).

  29. Scottish government defeated over tests for five-year-olds.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-45561715

    I’ve got to be honest, from what I have read I sympathise with the SNP over this. Critics seem to have misrepresented these tests as being an 11+ for kindergarteners, with kids being told they are failures, etc. In reality they seem more like an informal test to help teachers monitor their students’ progress. You can’t teach effectively if you have no feedback mechanism. It does look like a bit of political opportunism from the other parties at Holyrood.

  30. So the first statistics are in, and what do you know, minimum alcohol prices have done nothing to reduce consumption in Scotland, even of the Buckie-style products directly affected.

    Polltroll said at the time that this would just impoverish alcoholics, rather than help them quit. What is really needed is rehabilitation. It’s expensive but there’s no substitute.

  31. As an aside…I’ve often wondered if the government genuinely want us all to stop boozing and smoking. There would be a huge tax hit if that were the case, and any savings to the NHS would surely be offset by more people living longer and being a ‘burden’ (not my words, just how I think the powers that be might see it).

  32. “savings to the NHS would surely be offset by more people living longer and being a ‘burden’”

    That’s quite an understatement there. There are no “savings to the NHS” because we’ve all got to die of something, and usually that will involve expensive NHS treatment close to the end. Whether we die of smoking aged 60 or Alzheimers aged 95 is pretty much immaterial in terms of cost to the NHS.

    The key difference between them is 30 years of pension costs, which is approx. £200,000 at current prices for the state pension alone.

  33. “So the first statistics are in, and what do you know, minimum alcohol prices have done nothing to reduce consumption in Scotland, even of the Buckie-style products directly affected.

    Polltroll said at the time that this would just impoverish alcoholics, rather than help them quit. What is really needed is rehabilitation. It’s expensive but there’s no substitute.”

    It doesn’t just impoverish alcoholics, it impoverishes ordinary low-income people who enjoy a drink from time to time.

    It hardly takes Einstein to work out that pissheads and alcoholics will pay whatever it takes to get their fix. You might as well argue that increasing the price of drugs cuts drug addiction. I do hope Mother Theresa takes notice of this in case she’s tempted to introduce this policy in England (Cameron happily changed his mind).

  34. From an exchequer-centric point of view, the government wants us to live like monks until retirement, and then drink ourselves death soon afterwards.

    Of course, numerous studies show that the middle-aged now drink more than the young. Good to see we’re moving in the right direction…

  35. I’m not quite sure I agree with HH’s example. Someone who dies at 60 is almost certainly costing the NHS less overall than someone who dies at 95, irrespective of how they die. Whilst we are living longer, we aren’t necessarily living healthier lives. But it’s a good point re: pensions.

    I cannot remotely understand the appeal of living until 90, although maybe that’s because I don’t have kids.

  36. As for younger people, it certainly appears that they drink less than my generation (mid 30s). Perhaps there are better things to do, perhaps there are financial constraints. A night out on the piss is expensive, particularly in London and the South East. Not sure their drug taking is any less prevalent though, and obesity remains an issue.

  37. On minimum pricing: one other thought – given that it doesn’t cut sales, minimum prices are an effective transfer from poor drinkers to Carlsberg’s shareholders. If it went to exchequer at least it could be given back to them in the form of increased healthcare provision, but this is utterly regressive.

    On why young people don’t drink: it’s a combination of factors, cost of living is not the whole story. Social media, demographic factors, and fashionable diet advice are all relevant, too.

  38. our generation is more conservative than others according to recent studies

  39. “our generation is more conservative than others according to recent studies”

    The elephant in the room being the huge increase in the ethnic minority population, which is especially big at the younger end of the population pyramid.

    There are secondary impacts on others as well, because having muslim colleagues and friends makes it less likely that you will drink when you are around them.

    Whenever I deign to visit a WWC bastion the chavocracy seems to be as pissed up as ever. The new abstinence being concentrated largely in cities and cosmopolitan areas does reinforce the importance of the immigration factors I think.

  40. The first point I agree with to an extent. While some organised religions believe alcohol is sacrilege many will still drink anyway. I don’t think people choose not to drink because their friends dont though. Saying that my fiancee only drinks with her family as I don’t drink

  41. “The elephant in the room being the huge increase in the ethnic minority population, which is especially big at the younger end of the population pyramid.”

    That’s what I meant by “demographic factors”, really.

    “Whenever I deign to visit a WWC bastion the chavocracy seems to be as pissed up as ever. The new abstinence being concentrated largely in cities and cosmopolitan areas does reinforce the importance of the immigration factors I think.”

    Might this not also be because big cities, being places where cultural institutions cluster, have more entertainment options for people beyond the bottle?

  42. ‘our generation is more conservative than others according to recent studies’

    I’m not sure how true that actually is – presumably you are talking about people within the 16-25 year range

    Economically I think it generally holds – younger generations are far less convinced of a governments ability to make life better for the people they govern, even if they believe they should be doing that, which isn’t always a given

    Socially though this is patently untrue – with the younger generation more liberal than ever

  43. Attitudes are more liberal but when comes sex, alcohol, etc. Yiung people are drinking less, waiting longer, etc.

  44. Sure it is the very definition of liberal to celebrate other people’s values, even when they differ from one’s own. In that respect, young Muslims in this country are most definitely socially liberal, even as they observe their own traditions, culture, and faith.

  45. “Sure it is the very definition of liberal (blah blah)”

    There isn’t a consistent definition of liberal.

    I lived some years in the US and have an American wife, so we are often there. In the US everybody refers to me as a liberal. In this country nobody does. In the US context I’d probably self-define as a liberal but in a UK context I certainly don’t.

  46. ‘In the US everybody refers to me as a liberal. In this country nobody does. In the US context I’d probably self-define as a liberal but in a UK context I certainly don’t.’

    That’s interesting as in your case I would have thought the reverse to be true

    It wasn’t so long ago that liberal was a dirty word in US politics and Democrats throughout the Clinton era went to lengths to avoid any mention of the word whilst on the campaign trail

    Over there liberal seems more of a catch-all term used to describe anyone on Left – so much as there is a Left in Us politics

    Over here however you could make a strong case that Blair, Cameron, Clegg, Osborne and Major were (are) all liberals – and I would have thought such a description would fit somebody such as yourself

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