The Labour party faces being all but wiped out in Scotland at next year’s General Election, a new poll suggests. The Survation poll for the Daily Record puts the party – traditionally dominant north of the border – on just 24 percent, down from 42 percent in 2010. If the swing were uniform across the country, it would leave the party with just four MPs in Scotland, down from 41.
The main beneficiary from Labour’s collapse is the Scottish National Party (SNP), which is currently polling at a record 48 percent. If repeated at the General Election in May, the party would win 54 of Scotland’s 59 seats
The poll will come as a blow to the new Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy, whose election seems to be having no effect on his party’s falling popularity. Of those questioned, only 14 percent said Mr Murphy made them more likely to vote Labour, while 18 percent said he made them less likely to support the party. A massive 57 percent, however, were indifferent.
Scottish First Minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said: “This is a great early Christmas present for the SNP – our best ever Survation poll rating for a UK general election, as well as being over 50 percent for the Scottish Parliament constituency vote for the first time.
“I warmly welcome this poll, but we take absolutely nothing for granted – and the hard work begins in the New Year to ensure that we achieve a strong group of SNP MPs to give Scotland the strongest possible voice at Westminster.
“That way, we can use our influence to bring an end to austerity economics, make Scotland free of Trident nuclear weapons and get the powers Scotland needs to build a fairer society and more prosperous economy.”
Despite his party’s continued poor showing, Jim Murphy insisted Scottish Labour was changing: “We are one week into a new leadership team and really determined to change.
“We are rewriting the party’s constitution so that decisions about Scotland are made here in Scotland. The days of the Scottish Labour leader having to ask the party in London about things are gone and gone for good.
“I want Scotland to not only be the fairest part of the UK but the fairest country in the world. That’s why we will increase the taxes of the richest Scots to pay for our NHS and schools.”
If these results are repeated at the next General Election, it will be almost impossible for Labour to form a majority government, with the party previously relying on Scottish MPs to maintain control at Westminster. It is conceivable that they would even have to agree a coalition with the SNP to form a government, leading to the UK being governed by a party that wishes to break it up.
As the SNP moves further to the left under Nicola Sturgeon, it would also give Britain its most left-wing government for many decades.