We’ll just leave this here:
Actual percentage of female MSPs returned in the 2016 Scottish Parliament election:
Labour 46%, SNP 43%, Conservative 19%, Green 16%, Lib Dem 0%.
An interesting quirk of the Scottish electoral system is that if a list MSP stands down or dies, there isn’t a by-election. Because list votes are for a party not a person, they’re replaced by the next person on their party’s list, if there is one.
(This caused some controversy a few years ago when SNP list MSPs Jean Urquhart and John Finnie resigned from the party over the vote on NATO membership, but chose to remain in their seats. Some people said that because they were elected specifically as SNP members, not as themselves, they should have resigned and let SNP MSPs take their place. Finnie is now a Green list MSP.)
What that means, of course, is that if the Greens were truly committed to mandatory 50/50 gender representation in the Scottish Parliament, as their manifesto claims, they could have two of their five non-woman (the official Green terminology) MSPs stand down, to be replaced by women from the party’s list, instantly catapulting the party from second-bottom on the gender-equality table to first place.
(Every one of the five has a woman in second place on the Green lists.)
Alert readers will know that Wings Over Scotland is opposed to gender quotas. We’re against discrimination full stop. But even we have to admit that it’d be an admirable statement of principle and integrity if the Greens put their money where their mouths are on the subject. There’s absolutely nothing stopping them from doing so.
Let’s all hold our breath and see if it happens, shall we?