Whatever your party colours, the 2019 General Election result delivered a resounding result for the political roadmap on both sides of the border!
With all 650 seats across the country now declared, it’s evident now more than ever, that Scotland and the rest of the UK are on very different paths.
Overall, Boris Johnson’s Conservatives have 365 seats at Westminster now, a majority of 80 and a political earthquake of the magnitude of the Blair and Thatcher inaugurations. His majority is the largest since Margaret Thatcher’s in 1983, gaining 47 seats over their previous total before the election.
Meanwhile Labour have sunk to one of their worst performances nationally since the 1930’s, with just 203 seats. Jeremy Corbyn has said he will stand down once the party has had a chance to reflect on its losses and picks a new leader.
Jo Swinson lost her seat in East Dunbartonshire and has stepped down as Lib Dem leader.
Meanwhile in Northern Ireland, the pro-unification parties surged, with Sinn Fein and the SDLP picking up seats. Could this be the start of a much wider conversation about a united Ireland?
The Tory majority is a clear mandate from England and Wales that voters want Brexit done and to move on from the chaos of the last 3 years.
However, the situation in Scotland could not be more different.
The SNP gained 13 seats taking them to 48 MPs after standing on a manifesto to give Scotland a choice on independence and to oppose Brexit. The party now hold 80% of the seats in Scotland.
The party lost only one seat on the night – the ultra marginal North East Fife, where Stephen Gethins had a majority of just 2 votes to protect from 2017 and lost out to the Lib Dem’s Wendy Chamberlain this time.
But in every one of their existing seats, the vote was substantially up for the SNP, with huge swings in some seats.
In Airdrie & Shotts, Neil Gray took his majority from 195 in 2017 to over 5,000. In Dunfermline and West Fife, Douglas Chapman took his majority from 844 to 10,699.
David Linden in Glasgow East secured the seat with a majority of 5566 from just 75 votes in 2017. And in Perth, Pete Wishart moved the dial on his majority from just 21 votes in the previous election, to more than 7,500.
Falkirk’s SNP MP John McNally has the biggest majority in Scotland of any MP at 14,954 votes, up by over 10,000 on 2017.
Labour lost all but one of its seats, with Ian Murray clinging on in Edinburgh South and the Shadow Scottish Secretary, Lesley Laird, losing her seat in Kirkcaldy & Cowdenbeath, a former Labour stronghold where PM Gordon Brown once stood.
The Tories lost 7 of their Scottish MPs and Labour lost 6 in Scotland.
Names like Ged Killen, Paul Masterton, Paul Sweeney and Kirsten Hair are all out too.
Inevitably the discussion in London will now turn to completing the EU Withdrawal process by the new deadline of January 30th 2020, using Boris Johnson’s majority to get the deal through Westminster in the next week before Parliament goes into recess for Christmas.
But with a mandate from their 45% national vote share, the SNP are talking about how the democratic will of Scotland must be respected, with Nicola Sturgeon announcing today that The Scottish Government will bring forward a plan for IndyRef2 next week.
It’ll likely be a tough fight with the new Prime Minister, who has said he believes the issue of independence was settled in 2014 and will refuse to transfer the powers to hold a referendum to Holyrood.
In terms of ‘rainbow’ MPs, after some change in seats, Scotland has gained and we now have 11 LGB representatives:
Alyn Smith (SNP) – Stirling
Mhairi Black (SNP) – Paisley & Renfrewshire South
Angela Crawley (SNP) – Lanark & Hamilton East
Hannah Bardell (SNP) – Livingston
Neale Hanvey (IND) – Kirkcaldy & Cowdenbeath
Stewart McDonald (SNP) – Glasgow South
Joanna Cherry (SNP) – Edinburgh South West
Martin Doherty-Hughes (SNP) – Dunbartonshire West
David Mundell (CON) – Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale & Tweeddale
Stuart C McDonald (SNP) – Cumbernauld, Kilsyth & Kirkintilloch East
John Nicolson (SNP) – Ochil & South Perthshire