"LABOUR yesterday hailed a poll which shows the party has overtaken the SNP in Holyrood voting intentions.
It comes amid falling support for an independence referendum. A YouGov survey found the SNP remains ahead on the constituency vote with 35 per cent, compared with Labour's 34 per cent. But on the regional vote Labour is on 32 per cent and the SNP on 30 percent.
This would give Labour 49 seats – up three, while the SNP would drop to 44 – down three. "
That Labour is ahead at Westminster and to a lesser extent Europe comes as no great surprise - but getting that vote out will be a problem for the comrades in June so maybe not as rosy as it appears
Nor do the figures on independence referendum voting intentions surprise. Let's get real - the middle of a global recession ain't good time to go it alone. Thank god for Tavish's veto, long may he reign
But worrying is that the SNP Government is apparently behind on its own Holyrood patch, a patch where it controls the agenda, and only a few months ago it was comfortably ahead. Of course some of this slippage will be related to the global situation. But let's not kid ourselves this reflects some self inflicted damage; The humiliating abandonment of Local income Tax - and the pathetic reasons given: The failure to build new schools or hospitals: the catastrophically bad social housing outcomes ( yes -more money allocated ,but fewer house starts - what happens when you let duff anglo civil servants walk all over you with reject Blairite policies, Nicola ): That single tranferible excuse of a non existent £500 million cut - two years from now : That RBS link, including the ridiculous decision ot continue with Sir Fred’s sugar daddy, turned tax dodger, Sir George Mathieson as the Scottish Government's chief economic advisor ( a joke amongst the business community and politically astute, who all know he's still there for one reason - he's Eck's chum ): Creative Scotland.
And Ian Gray's Scottish Labour party - much better than that of Wendo . Understands it is in opposition and is playing the long game. Exploiting issues such as the ones listed above, and generally just more astute. And Jim Murphy - a winner. Look at his record from NUS to Eastwood - he is no clown.
Yes, there are some things that are outwith SNP control, but not all. Here the new heavyweight reinforcements of Alex Neil, Mike Russell and the fresh thinking of Keith Brown will help. But Nicola on Housing and a lesser extent health, and Fiona Hyslop and education ( try doing a single thing New Labour would not have done), and a few others - shape up or ship out.
The requirements now are altogether bigger than outmaneuvering a few lefties within the SNP caucus, or driving Margo and Dorothy-Grace out (what a waste of great folks) to get yourselves a bit higher up that list. It's now big issues, big forces - so get the finger out
Let this poll - and it's only a poll, and only one - be a warning.
The Unionist's gloves are off - time to bite back. But with measurable results, not slogans. Because, come polling day the SNP Government will be rightly judged on its record - and on quite a few vital fronts it ain’t that good. But two full years to put it right - but only if the SNP recognises these failures, not rally round the culprits.
And John Swinney – you are a star. Sort out the rest of them.