الأربعاء , يونيو 17 2020

SNP to launch election manifesto

Nicola Sturgeon

The SNP is to unveil its election manifesto, setting out an “alternative to austerity” and positioning the party as a force for UK-wide change.

Ahead of the launch in Edinburgh, deputy leader Stewart Hosie said the party “would bring progressive politics to the rest of the UK”.

Scottish Labour and the Liberal Democrats have criticised the SNP’s continued calls for fiscal autonomy.

In Glasgow, the Scottish Conservatives will warn voters of an SNP-Labour deal.

The electorate throughout the UK will go to the polls on 7 May to choose their next MP.

‘Progressive politics’

SNP deputy leader Stewart Hosie said his party’s manifesto would “lay out incredibly clearly how we intend to see a genuine end to austerity”, and would “try to bring progressive politics to the rest of the UK”.

Speaking on the BBC’s Sunday Politics Scotland programme, he said: “The polls don’t just show the SNP with a substantial lead over Labour for some seven months, with the last one having that gap widened.

“They show a hung parliament position in the UK with the SNP potentially having a pivotal role.

“I think we are absolutely right under Nicola Sturgeon’s leadership to try and bring progressive politics to the UK when we’ve got the opportunity to do that.”

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What will be covered in the manifesto?

Policy areas that are expected to be mentioned in the SNP's election manifesto

It is expected that the SNP’s manifesto will commit SNP MPs to participate in votes on major issues south of the border which impact on devolved areas in Scotland, such as the NHS.

The document is also expected to include a pledge to back Labour’s promise to reduce English tuition fees from £9,000 to £6,000.

The BBC’s James Cook sets out what we can expect to see when the party’s manifesto is launched on Monday afternoon.

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Focusing on the SNP aim of gaining fiscal autonomy over Scotland’s finances, Scottish Labour accused the SNP of creating a financial “bombshell”, while the Liberal Democrats said the plans would be “felt harshly” in Scotland, if “they cut the ties of pooling and sharing across the UK”.

Liberal Democrat Danny Alexander argued that full fiscal autonomy would mean a cut of £1bn to public services in Glasgow alone.

Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Scotland Alistair Carmichael also challenged the SNP to commit to the British Business Bank.

Mr Carmichael said: “What companies will want to hear from the SNP is a cast-iron guarantee that they will support the work of the British Business Bank. Projects and funding deals must not be put at risk by the SNP’s plan for a second referendum.”

Financial ‘bombshell’

Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy said: “Scottish Labour’s manifesto produced fully costed policies that will bring an end to austerity and make life fairer for working class Scots.

“Now it’s the SNP’s turn. Their key general election policy is to cut Scotland off from UK-wide taxes, meaning an end to the UK pension and welfare state here.

“Their plans would drop a £40.5bn bombshell in Scotland’s finances, a bombshell that would only get bigger over time.”

‘Priority of separation’

Giving a speech in Glasgow, Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson will tell voters that a “back-room SNP-Labour Deal would threaten Scotland”.

She will urge Labour to “wake up and realise that the SNP’s first and last priority will always be separation”.

Ms Davidson will say: “How can people all across the UK possibly be asked to believe a leader who claims to have the interests of a country at heart which she still wants to break up?

“If Nicola Sturgeon really wants to prove her constructive credentials, there’s a test she has to meet.

“It’s to accept – right now, before the election – that the United Kingdom is staying together for the next generation, in line with her own pledge, and in line with the decision made by the people of Scotland last year.”

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key priorities

Policy guide: Where the parties stand

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