SNP Socialists Convener Rory Steel argues that the best vote for socialists on the 8th of June is for the Scottish National Party…
In recent elections, pro-indy Scottish Socialists may have hesitantly voted SNP to take us further towards independence. But Corbyn’s radical manifesto has brought a challenge to the SNP to justify to these people why they should vote for them again on June 8th.
Corbyn has included a number of policies that would be attractive. But for pro-indy Socialists, the best option is to vote SNP.
Scottish Labour is not Corbyn’s Labour. Only 20 of the Labour candidates in Scotland are known Corbynites. We can’t be fooled into thinking SLAB have changed. I’ve often said that most of the Corbynites in Scotland are in the SNP. For many SNP members, independence is the route to a Socialist Scotland that just isn’t realistic in the long term while we stay in the UK.
While the SNP may not be to the complete liking to pro-indy Socialists, the policies they agree with are often overlooked or taken for granted. Opposing austerity and nuclear weapons on the Clyde, increased council house building, redistribution of wealth through a 50pm tax rate, a welfare system built on dignity and respect, triple locked pensions, opposition to foreign intervention, community empowerment to name but a few.
And Corbyn hasn’t changed Labour policy completely. Labour doesn’t respect Scotland’s will to rid us of Trident nukes on the Clyde. They don’t respect the sovereignty of the Scottish Parliament to hold a second independence referendum. They don’t respect our democratic rights to decide our future.
In any case, Corbyn isn’t going to be around forever. The Blairite wing of Labour are already sharpening their knives preparing for the 9th of June or a future election. If Socialists in Labour win the civil war again, while we remain in the UK we will always be subject to Tory Governments we don’t vote for. Corbyn is for five years. Independence is forever. We can’t ignore the fact that we are at yet another critical juncture. And the only way Corbyn would be open to discussions over Scotref is if there is a strong SNP voice sent to Westminster.
As a party that can only win 59 seats, the SNP has to work with other parties to greatly impact UK policy. Realistically, SNP MPs will always back a Labour Government over a Tory one. We’ve already seen this with olive branches being extended by SNP council groups to Labour across Scotland only for Labour to strike deals with Tories.
Given that the Scottish vote has only affected the outcome of UK elections a handful of times in the past 100 years, what happens in rUK will ultimately decide who sits in Government. SNP MPs will give a uniquely Scottish voice whether that is in opposition or through backing a Labour minority government.
A Labour-SNP supply and demand deal would give the perfect mix of radical progressive policies, many of which are shared between the parties, while securing a uniquely Scottish voice and Scotref.
The only way to do that is for pro-indy Socialists in Scotland to vote SNP and for us all to cross our fingers for the rest of the UK.
Joining at the age of 17, Rory Steel has been a devoted member and activist in the SNP since 2011.
Born and bred in Larkhall in Lanarkshire, Rory began studying Politics at Strathclyde University and moved to Glasgow’s East End where, in 2013, he began campaigning with members of the SNP Youth and SNP Shettleston. He soon thereafter founded and convened Yes Strathclyde and SNP Strathclyde, taking a leading role in grassroots activism.
Currently, Rory serves as the National Vice Convener of the SNP Youth and has focused his efforts on regionalising the organisation to give ordinary members more control; establishing international links with similar left-wing nationalist parties across the world; and has led the Youth wing’s anti-militarisation campaign.
Disclaimer: articles published on Red Thistle are the views of the individual authors and not necessarily those of SNP Socialists as a whole.