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
Ian Hudghton (SNP) Former leader of Angus council. MEP for North-East Scotland 1998-1999, for Scotland since 1999.
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.
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.
Alyn Smith (SNP) Born 1973, Glasgow. Educated at Leeds and Heidelberg Universities. Commercial lawyer. MEP for Scotland since 2004.
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.
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
Ian Hudghton (SNP) Former leader of Angus council. MEP for North-East Scotland 1998-1999, for Scotland since 1999.
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.
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.
Alyn Smith (SNP) Born 1973, Glasgow. Educated at Leeds and Heidelberg Universities. Commercial lawyer. MEP for Scotland since 2004.
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.
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 - 707 Responses on “Europe Scotland”
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  1. Well, having not posted on this site for probably over a year now, I think I’ll just get this thread started.

    Still over a year away, the European election is pretty difficult to predict. With the advantage of living in Scotland, I will just offer a few suggestions of possible themes (for the 2009 European election I predicted every seat in every region of the UK, and got 3 wrong).

    Labour will win most votes in Scotland, easily topping 30%, and will win 3 of the 6 seats.

    The SNP will be second, comfortably holding 2 seats, and possibly coming quite close to a third, but I can’t see them quite managing it.

    The Libdems will struggle to remain in 4th, and will lose their seat.

    The Conservatives will probably be third, retaining their seat, but not with very many votes to spare. The threshold for winning a seat in Scotland will probably be around 10% of the vote, it may be pretty close as to whether or not the Conservatives get this; I tend to think they will.

    The UK Independence Party will gain, but probably by less here than in the rest of the UK. May well beat the Libdems into 5th, and could be breathing down the necks of the Conservatives, and entertaining hopes of a seat, but I think it is unlikely they will win one.

    The Greens vote share will probably reduce a little, but not too much. No hope of a seat, outside chance of finishing ahead of the Libdems, but probably unlikely.

    All other parties will continue to be irrelevant with well under 5% of the vote.

  2. As with Brighton, I disagree with you quite strongly.

    I think the SNP will beat Labour, both will double the tory vote share quite easily. That gives us SNP 2 Labour 2 Tory 1.

    I can’t see the order of the first 5 seats changing (outside possibility of labour beating SNP perhaps).

    The 6th is hard to predict. The possibilities are:
    3rd SNP seat
    3rd Labour seat
    LD seat
    Green seat
    UKIP seat.

    If we presume the Greens will take a little of the 2009 LD vote and end up on around 8-9% then this means that 30% or a little lower would secure the better performing of the big 2 parties a 3rd seat. I could definatley see the SNP managing that, maybe labour too. The LDs look very unlikely to get anywhere near that figure. The only potential spanner in the works is how well UKIP could challenge the SNP for the 6th seat. They got 6.7% here in 2004, and you would have thought in these conditions they should beat this comfortably.

    I struggle to see how well UKIP will do north of the border. I feel actually UKIP really need to get some Welsh and Scottish voices out their to pick up their votes.

    They should beat both the Greens and LDs though, wether or not they get too 1/3 of the SNP total is hard to call, I’m probably saying no at the moment.

    SNP 3
    Labour 2
    Tory 1



  3. Joe, other than thinking the SNP will beat Labour, and that the Greens will gain a little rather than lose a little, you don’t seem to disagree with me at all.

    The reason I think the Greens will struggle to beat their previous score is that they are more or less at saturation point in terms of votes they can realistically win. In order to get more than 7-8% anywhere (barring a few isolated areas) the Greens really need a lot of electoral conditions going for them all at the same time. I take the point about them getting a few disgruntled Libdems (though I think a lot of these will go to Labour), but don’t forget their vote was artificially boosted in 2009 (as, admittedly, was UKIP’s) by the expenses thing. If they gate about the same percentage as last time I’d think they’ll be pretty happy.

    Labour will beat the SNP for two reasons: firstly, because a very high proportion of Scottish voters have an almost compulsive need to vote Labour regardless. Last time round Labour’s vote was about as diluted as it could possibly be in Scotland, with the entire political landscape going against them. Scottish voters revert to them pretty quickly, and once they’ve been out of government 4 years their vote will have no trouble topping 30%.

    Secondly, and perhaps more pertinently, the SNP are considerably less popular now than they were 2 years ago, as are their leadership. Their pet project is also unpopular, and by 2014 with the referendum coming up, Scottish folk will be more and more inclined to vote against the SNP (which up here generally means for Labour). I wouldn’t discount the possibility of them reaching 30%, but I suspect 25% is a much more realistic prospect for them.

    The Conservatives will fall back, perhaps to around 12%. They have alienated their core support all over the country (people like me, a Conservative activist last time round), and, being in government, are not in a position to pick up many others to fill the gaps. I can’t see them losing their seat, and despite my earlier comment I can’t actually see the SNP coming very close to pinching it.

    I think the order will be:


  4. The SNP will be shortlisting the European candidates at this weekend’s Spring(!) Conference – there are 14 nominees including both Ian Hudghton and Alyn Smith, and these will be whittled down to six, who will go forward to the wider membership for ranking over the Summer. If my Facebook and Twitter feeds are any indication (packed to the gills as they are with SNP bods :)), I’d say keep your eye out for Duncan Ross, former National Secretary of the Party. I wouldn’t be too surprised to see Toni Giuliano (connections in the YSI and the Edinburgh branches), Natalie McGarry (Women for Independence) and Chris Stephens (Trade Union Group) make the short list either.

    In terms of the prediction, I’d say bear in mind that the SNP have historically taken the Euro Elections very, very seriously, to the extent that the 2004 vote was what finally did for John Swinney’s Leadership, and so far the SNP and Labour are both gaining support at the expense of the Tories and LibDems. That’s going to continue, but I think Labour will edge it with that group this time.

    That said, the SNP have built enough of a lead overall to stay in front: I take Neil’s point that the Leadership isn’t as popular as two years ago but the same could have been said in 2009 and the result was still an 8 percentage point lead. It’ll be closer this time, and I can see both parties getting 30%+, but I agree broadly with Joe’s comments, and I’m joining the consensus that the Tories will lose votes, but not enough to lose their seat.

    I think the order will be:


  5. Conservative selection candidates:

    Belinda Don (assistant of the retiring MEP; previously stood in Glenrothes, Dundee West, Cowdenbeath. Number 2 on 2009 Euro list)

    Ian Duncan (works at Holyrood and previously stood in Aberdeen South; allegedly the favourite of Ruth Davidson)

    Jamie Gardiner

    Nosheena Mobarik (chairwoman of CBI Scotland)

    Iain McGill (2011 candidate in Edinburgh Central)

    Stuart McIntyre (former agent of Jackson Carlow MSP in his failed attempts in East Renfrewshire)

    SNP candidates:

    Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh (former Labour, former Conservative but she’s in the SNP for over 10 years now

    Stephen Gethins

    Toni Giugliano

    Ian Hudghton MEP

    Alyn Smith MEP

    Chris Stephens (from Glasgow)

    Next step is obviously ranking them. IMO crucial spots are the first one on Tory list (the sitting MEP is retiring) and number 3 on SNP list (assuming the 2 incumbents are likely to top the poll)

  6. And we have the six names:

    Ian Hudghton
    Alyn Smith
    Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh
    Stephen Gethins
    Toni Giuliano
    Chris Stephens

    They’ll now be ranked by the wider membership, and given my rather mixed success rate at working out who’d get shortlisted, I think I’ll opt not to make any further predictions at this stage!

    What I would say as a health warning, however, is that I don’t know the actual placing of candidates in this vote, and the electorate will be very different: the shortlisting was carried out by delegates to the Spring Conference – who would a) have been selected by branches and b) actually managed to reach Inverness in less than perfect conditions. This next stage of the process will be an all-postal OMOV vote with every SNP Member registered to vote in Scotland getting a ballot paper – so even if we did know the placing from today’s vote, it wouldn’t be much of a guide…

  7. Bah. Scooped!

    Technically, the SNP doesn’t offer protection to its incumbents so in theory, they could find themselves anywhere on the List once the votes are in. However, both sitting MEPs do make an effort to get the word out to the wider membership (and I have the Ian Hudghton MEP 2013 calendar stuck up above my desk – I’m pretty sure it gets posted out to more or less everyone in the SNP) so on balance, they do still have a practical advantage.

  8. Like what has been said already, right now I would expect the result to be

    SNP – 2
    Labour 2
    Conservative -1

    and a tossup between the SNP and Labour for the last seat.

    I can see the Lib Dems finishing behind UKIP and losing their seat.

  9. David Martin and Catherine Stihler reselected by Labour

    New candidates to be ranked:

    Asim Khan
    Derek Munn
    Katrina Murray
    Kirsty O’Brien

    Third spot will go the highest polling candidate regardless of gender and then gender alternance untill the bottom of the list.

  10. I would expect Belinda Don to get the number 1 position for the Conservatives, and would guess it would be SNP 3, Labour 2, C 1

  11. My money (probably literally) will be on Will Patterson & Matt being proved correct.

  12. Andrea – is the Kirsty O’Brien the same one who was Gordon Brown’s policy advisor who stood in Southwark N & Bermondsey in 2005?

  13. The Tories would be better off with someone else with real life experience like Ian McGill or Nosheena Mobarik rather than a party worker like Belinda Don.

  14. I doubt very much if the Conservatives lose more than 2% of their vote, and not all of it to UKIP.

    The LibDems will lose enough votes to lose their place.

    Joe is right.

  15. Matt

    I think that one was Kristy McNeill.

    This Kristy O’Brien stood in 2004 Euro elections too. She worked as Labour Head of Policy Development and as SpAd at Equality and Human Rights Commission,

    Munn is also a former SpAd and now works as Director of Policy & Public Affairs at the Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists.

    Murray is a union activist. She stood in Dundee East in 2010 GE. And she is the former wife of the disgraced gay drug addict former Glasgow leader.

    I don’t have a clue on who this Khan is.

  16. @Andrea what does being gay have to do with anything?

  17. “what does being gay have to do with anything?”

    the candidate can’t put gaydar in her CV!

    Conservatives ranking

    1. Ian Duncan
    2. Belinda Don
    3. Nosheena Mobarik
    4. Jamie Gardiner
    5. Iain McGill
    6. Stuart McIntyre

  18. Maybe the order of the adjectives doesn’t sound well with gay in between disgraced and drug addict! I didn’t want to imply anything negative

  19. I see. Although I don’t really see the relevance of someones sexual orientation but fair enough.

    I believe Ian Duncan was Ruth Davidson’s prefered candidate. No doubt she’ll be pleased he’s top of the list.

  20. SNP Ranking

    1. Ian Hudghton MEP
    2. Alyn Smith MEP
    3. Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh
    4. Stephen Gethins
    5. Toni Giugliano
    6. Chris Stephens

  21. Labour list

    1 David Martine MEP
    2 Catherine Stihler MEP
    3 Derek Munn
    4 Katrina Murray
    5 Asim Khan
    6 Kirsty O’Brien

  22. “SNP Ranking

    1. Ian Hudghton MEP
    2. Alyn Smith MEP
    3. Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh
    4. Stephen Gethins
    5. Toni Giugliano
    6. Chris Stephens”

    Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh was the Tory candidate for Glasgow Govan in the initial 1999 Holyrood Elections.

  23. UKIP candidates:

    David Coburn – Stood Old Bexley & Sidcup 2010, chair of UKIP London
    Mike Scott-Hayward – Stood Fife NE 2005 for the Conservatives, 2010 for UKIP, Chair UKIP Scotland
    Christopher Monckton – Member of the House of Lords, UKIP Scotland president.
    Otto Inglis – Stood Aberdeen Donside byelection 2013, Secretary of UKIP Scotland
    Paul Henke – Stood Stirling 2010, ex chair UKIP Scotland
    Malcolm Macaskill – Stood Glasgow Rutherglen 1992, Rutherglen & Hamilton W 2010, for the Conservatives
    Ross Durance – Stood Inverness, Nairn, Bdenoch & Strathspey 2010
    Steven McKeane – Stood Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale & Tweeddale 2010
    Kevin Newton – Stood Clydesdale 2001 for the Conservatives

  24. Matt –

    Monckton isn’t a member of the House of Lords, he’s a hereditary peer who inherited his peerage *after* the hereditary peers were removed, so has never sat there. He has claimed he is in the past, but the House of Lords have definitively stated that he is not:

  25. OK thanks for the clarification.

  26. LAB 41.9
    SNP 22.9
    CON 9.3
    GRN 8.0
    LD 7.5
    UKIP 4.9

  27. Personally I prefer it when you’re posting as 111

  28. I’m not 111 haha, he’s a UKIP supporter I believe. Why, do you think my Labour estimate is too high? I’m not a fan of them either so it’s not bias, just stats- though in politics there are so many extraneous variables which make the theoretical less accurate.

  29. Sad to hear that Malcolm has left the Conservatives.

    “Malcolm Macaskill – Stood Glasgow Rutherglen 1992, Rutherglen & Hamilton W 2010, for the Conservatives”

    Malcolm Macaskill had been adopted for the Tories Glasgow list seat prior to the 2011 Scottish Parliament Elections following the retirement of Bill Aitken MSP.

    Something happened that resulted in the selection being re-run and Ruth Davison being selected.

  30. Dalek

    I’m wondering if “Illya Kuryakin” is some kind of Carry On innuendo. If so I don’t get it yet.

  31. I didn’t realise Malcolm had left the Conservative party, seems to have been over a year ago. Malcolm is a good guy, and would have been a great candidate for the Conservative party. The shocking skullduggery that led to his unceremonious removal was a part of the reason I left the party.

  32. He’s joined UKIP.

    Have the Lib Dems had their selection yet? I think it will be rather academic as, I think they will lose their seat.

  33. UKIP Scotland.. what’s that?

    Apparently imploding yet again,, will they make it to May in one piece?

  34. According to an article in The Scotsman, a recent ICM poll has UKIP only 1% behind the Tories!

  35. The 6th and final seat is going to be a very close run thing

    The latest poll, when you divvy up the seats, gives the totals at the 6th round being:

    Tories – 11%
    UKIP – 10%
    Labour – 9.67% (Already won 2 seats)
    SNP – 9.25% (Already won 3 seats)

    The Tories suddenly in a bit of bother, when you’d have thought their seat was pretty safe. UKIP splitting the centre right vote, and even if they don’t win a seat from the Tories, they could open the back door for Labour to win a 3rd seat or even a stunning 4th SNP seat.

  36. How I would laugh if the Tories lost their only Scottish MEP to UKIP!

  37. My final prediction for Scotland:

    2 SNP
    2 LAB
    1 CON
    1 UKIP

    I see 4 seats here as guaranteed (2 each for Labour and the SNP) with the 5th seat likely to go to the Tories. I have noticed that the SNP have been losing steam in opinion polls recently while UKIP have been steadily growing in Scotland. If UKIP can harness the 11% that opinion polls are predicting them to take at present, the SNP will be denied of a 3rd seat.

  38. The final seat between the SNP and UKIP is almost a toss up though.

  39. I thought there was a seat which could be won by either the Tories or UKIP, but I didn’t think there was any chance of them both winning one.

  40. This really is a tough one to call but I’ll go for


  41. SNP 2
    Lab 2
    Con 1
    UKIP 1

  42. Not for the first time, on the cross-break for Euro intention the Scottish Green Party (quite seperate from GP England & Wales btw) was over 10% on last nights YG (see also the recent ICM). While certainly YG/AW will say they _aren’t_ reliable, last nights figures (Lab 31%, SNP30%, Scottish Greens 12%, Con 10, UKIP 9 etc) would give Lab 3 seats, SNP 2, Scottish Greens 1, and aren’t just based on instincts/predjudices/wishful thinking in the way some recent predictions here appear to have been.

  43. Instincts, prejudices and wishful thinking are better predictors than selectively quoting poll subsamples, which are so small as to be useless.

    Also if you keep quoting every regional subsample it’s going to get very boring.

  44. Agree completely with H.Hemmelig. Also Farage was on This Week last night, ramping UKIP. He thinks they will definitely get a scottish MEP probably two!

  45. HH,
    Even if I quoted every regional subsample it won’t get very boring, because still most polls don’t ask about European VI, and even fewer have subsamples that reflect the constituency/regional boundaries for the European Election (some include Scotland with North of England, for example). Anyway, this is a site for discussing opinion polls, far more than one for discussing instincts/predjudices/wishful thinking.

    And I haven’t been selectively quoting, in that both of the last two I had seen both had Scottish Green Party over 10% in Scotland (I have _since_ looked at the COM Res one, which has the Scottish Green Party on a lower share, but still ahead of UKIP, when two people have predicticed UKIP winning as seat in Scotland on this thread in the last fortnight – real evidence consistently suggests the Scottish Green Party has a better chance of winning a seat than the instincts/predjudices/wishful thinking of people on this site would indicate).

  46. I think you’ve misunderstood H.H’s point. He’s saying that those regional subsamples are so worthless that you might as well just go with guesswork.

    Those subsamples use so few people that it’s pointless using them as a representative poll. I’m not saying the Greens definitely won’t do well, but those subsamples have such an enormous margin of error, that you’d do well not to stake your views on them.

  47. My prediction is

    3 SNP
    2 Labour
    1 Conservative

  48. VF
    The size of the subsample is less of a problem with a skewed distribution (such as the vote share of a party with around 90% or 10% support) than it is with a more even response distribution (such as parties with 35-50% support levels). Even so, I do agree that a regional subsample of a single poll is pretty worthless (perhaps not much better than guesswork, but a little bit): however, I wasn’t reacting to a single subsample – I mentioned two, polls for a start.

    Meanwhile, have you thought about the vote shares associated with that prediction you have made? What shares do you think are likely?

  49. It would be great for democracy to see the Greens win a couple more seats. As the Lib Dems are already down the toilet, I imagine it would be most damaging to Labour. There is enough right of centre vote in Scotland to secure at least one seat for either the Tories or UKIP, even if their vote shares are almost the same, therefore I don’t see how the Greens could sneak a seat here without a big drop in the Labour or SNP share.

  50. I think you are saying that Con & UKIP will always be significantly > 20%, but the Survation poll for the Daily Record reported on UKPR yesterday night gives Con & UKIP together less than that for both Holyrood VIs, and even the higher 21.3% combined for Westminster VI wouldn’t be enough to guarantee a right-wing MEP in Scotland if it split very nearly equally between the two.

    So, what about Lab 31%, SNP30%, Scottish Greens 12%, Con 10%, UKIP 9%? That looks like Scottish Greens sneaking a seat without a big drop in Lab or SNP shares to me.

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