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The hangers-on

Posted on May 01, 2015 by

Today’s Scottish Sun has a full breakdown of all 59 Scottish seats at Westminster, including bookies’ odds for the favourite in each one. It suggests that nine Labour MPs will have jobs in Scotland a week from today, along with two Tories and a single lonely Lib Dem, with the SNP sweeping the other 47.

frankroy4

We ran the incumbents in those 12 seats through MP Report Card, an independent site which tracks the activity of all the UK’s MPs including expenses claims, outside earnings, how often they turn up to vote or speak in debates and how good they are at replying to constituents’ letters, to gauge their calibre.

You can click on the images below to enlarge them. Basically an orange circle is bad (high expenses or low attendance), green is good and yellow is average.

————————————————————————————————————-

BERWICKSHIRE, ROXBURGH AND SELKIRK
Sun prediction: Tory gain from Lib Dem

Sitting MP: Michael Moore

rcmoore

DUMFRIESSHIRE, CLYDESDALE AND TWEEDDALE
Sun prediction: Tory hold

Sitting MP: David Mundell

rcmundell

EAST RENFREWSHIRE
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Jim Murphy

rcmurphy1

EDINBURGH SOUTH
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Ian Murray

rcmurray

GLASGOW NORTH EAST
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Willie Bain

rcbain

GLASGOW SOUTH WEST
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Ian Davidson

rcdavidson

GLENROTHES
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Lindsay Roy (2015 candidate: Melanie Ward)

rcroy

KIRKCALDY AND COWDENBEATH
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Gordon Brown (2015 candidate: Kenneth Selbie)

rcbrown

MOTHERWELL AND WISHAW
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Frank Roy

rcfroy

ORKNEY AND SHETLAND
Sun prediction: Lib Dem hold

Sitting MP: Alistair Carmichael

rccarmichael

RUTHERGLEN AND HAMILTON WEST
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Tom Greatrex

rcgreatrex

WEST DUNBARTONSHIRE
Sun prediction: Labour hold

Sitting MP: Gemma Doyle

rcdoyle

————————————————————————————————————-

Out of all 12, just three (Willie Bain, Tom Greatrex and the departing Lindsay Roy) scored more “above average” ratings than “below average” ones. Only two claimed below-average expenses – and one of those was ironically Gordon Brown, who still relieved the public purse of over quarter of a million pounds despite almost never turning up for work and calling himself an “ex-politician”.

Only one (Ian Davidson) came even close to the average number of rebellions against their party’s whip. Frank Roy and Jim Murphy were below-average in every category but one. And for a man who lives in Scotland’s biggest city, with excellent transport links, Murphy’s expenses in return for that sub-par performance were eye-watering.

(By way of contrast, SNP MPs like Eilidh Whiteford and Mike Weir claimed lower expenses than almost all of their Labour counterparts, despite all being from more distant constituencies, and even the costliest – Angus MacNeil from the remote and physically vast Na h-Eileanan an Iar – was £56,000 cheaper than Murphy.)

Nevertheless, on current polling those are the 12 seats which will send Unionist MPs back for another five years on the gravy train only occasionally interrupted by the tiresome need to get up and represent their constituents. We can only assume that everything in those parts of Scotland is just peachy the way it is.

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    1. 01 05 15 12:45

      The hangers-on | Politics Scotland | Scoop.it

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    104 to “The hangers-on”

    1. Camz says:

      The troughs are finally going to get rinsed out.

    2. Juteman says:

      I posted on the last thread that i’m sure i just heard Jackson Carlaw say that he has seen postal votes, and folk are voting tacticaly. Did my ears deceive me?

    3. tartanthing says:

      If anyone wants to stop these people keep their seats you need to urgently get down to your local campaign hub. There aren’t many days left. We need to chase down every vote now. Your local SNP candidate needs you!
      As for my incumbent, Ian Davidson, we are taking nothing for granted in our hub, canvas returns and polls don’t elect candidates, voting does.

    4. muttley79 says:

      That result sounds about right to me. I hope in particular that Murphy, Davidson, Mundell get beaten. I just cannot see the SNP getting 50 or over seats. Winning 47 out of 59 seats would be a brilliant result for the SNP. Remember they currently have 6 MPs, and their best result saw them have 11 MPs.

    5. tartanthing says:

      If anyone wants to stop these people keep their seats you need to urgently get down to your local campaign hub. There aren’t many days left. We need to chase down every vote now. Your local SNP candidate needs you!

      As for my incumbent, Ian Davidson, we are taking nothing for granted in our hub, canvas returns and polls don’t elect candidates, voting does.

    6. Capella says:

      @Juteman
      I heard that too, around 12.00-12.15 on The Big Debate R Scotland.
      Sorry it’s OT but think it needs checked out.

    7. think again says:

      I have a dilemma — SNP gain 41 seats and hold 47 out of 59.

      Why does my glass feel like it is half empty when a year ago if we had 12 MPs my cup would have runneth over?

      Just look at how far we have come in the last few months and how high our expectations are now.

      Last weekend of leafleting for me for a wee while now. Keep up the good work folks.

    8. Auld Rock says:

      No Juteman your ears did not deceive you I heard it too and I’ve just emailed a colleague that unlike Wee Ruthie at the Referendum this time there must be a full investigation and not once again swept under the carpet.

      Auld Rock

    9. Ally says:

      The last one is factually wrong! West Dumbartonshire is currently held by Libdem Jo Swinson. East Dumbartonshire is currently held by Lab Gemma Doyle – the bookies have SNP at 1/8 to gain W Dum.

    10. Ally says:

      Ah – you fixed it!

    11. Doug Daniel says:

      Carlaw probably just means that during canvassing they’ve identified folk who have already cast their postal vote, and have said who they voted for and why. It happens all the time – we had several folk telling us they’d already voted when we were out last night chapping doors.

      (Or he may simply be bullshitting, of course…)

    12. Richardinho says:

      The biggest news about that is surely the Tory gain of one seat which could be absolutely crucial after Thursday regarding who can or can’t form a government. Would serve Labour right for encouraging tactical voting.

    13. think again says:

      According to his MPs report card Gordon Brown earned more for a one hour speech than I did for two years work.

      Any further comment will get me into trouble so lets just leave it meantime.

    14. MichaelC says:

      In terms of the postal vote, bear in mind that a lot of these consist of older folks who tend to be more set in their lifelong voting ways…

      Including, to be fair my 81yr old mum who has been SNP since the 70’s 🙂

    15. Training Day says:

      Where do the Sun get these predictions from?

      Didn’t Davidson’s Ashcroft poll show him trailing hugely?

    16. Dinnatouch says:

      Not surprised to see Frank Roy there, Motherwell & Wishaw is one of those areas that traditionally weighed Labour votes. It’s also one of the area that voted Yes last year, so his maybe his triumphant return to Westminster isn’t as certain as he’d like.

      I can confirm that everything is not peachy in Motherwell & Wishaw. Roy himself got a hard time from the audience at a referendum debate with Blair Jenkins last year. There is also a lot of bad feeling directed at the Labour run council for the disastrous roadworks that have been inflicted on Wishaw over the last two years (put Wishaw bus stops into Google image search for one example of the insanity). Labour may find that they’ve taken the people of Motherwell & Wishaw for granted once too often.

    17. Alex Grant says:

      Re Jackson Carlaw’s comment on postal votes I am assured that all parties can legally have sight of postal votes in advance of polling day.Surprised me but this comes from a senior party official

    18. Sunniva says:

      How depressing that Mundell, Murphy, Carmichael and Davidson might get back in.

    19. Calgacus says:

      FFS Murphy on nearly half a million in expenses alone and he wants a triple salary as mp, msp and FM.

      Greedy gulpin basturt

    20. Dr Jim says:

      @Ally

      Sorry Ally, Jo Swinson is indeed East Dunbartonshire, my constituency, and she’s going down

    21. call me dave says:

      Some folk are asking.
      Did Jackson Carlaw say that he has seen postal votes, and folk are voting tactically?
      —————————————————————-

      I thought he was only speaking about his personal experiences on the doorstep recalling that voters were voting tactically.

      But I’ll check it on the playback later, I could be wrong.

      The debate is interesting but a bit sterile overall.

      The real story is about what Ed utters later today, and we take it from there.

    22. donald anderson says:

      The National today reported Silly Billies attacking SNP rooms in Dumbarton Rd, Partick. The lone besieged SNP female had to phone the polis. The local Grand Wizard placed the blame firmly oan “Hingers Oan”.

      If anyone has seen seen the state of these hingers oan at Orange Rallies they could be forgiven fro believing they had stumbled upon an alien world of mass idiocy.

    23. Tony Jensen says:

      From the information given we can say that in 5 years 650 MPs claimed £184m in expenses. How is that even possible?

    24. panda paws says:

      @juteman and capella

      And that is why my postal vote will be handed in to my nearest polling station on the day. (My actual polling station is further away from where I live and with no direct bus route – which is madness.)

      Fellow postal voters – you can hand deliver your ballot to any polling station in your constituency. It goes in a separate black box – ask to watch it being put in.

    25. kirriereoch says:

      I can´t help thinking Westminster will play mischief and play “the Shetland Card” if Mr Carmichael holds his seat.

      http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2013/12/12/the-shetland-card/

    26. AAW says:

      We are working our socks off to get rid of Ian Davidson in this constituency. The election is still to be won by the SNP.

    27. crazycat says:

      @ Alex Grant

      Really? Not of the actual votes, surely. They can attend the verification sessions and try to sneak a peek like anyone else; they can probably find out how many votes have been issued and returned, but no-one can see the fronts of the ballot papers till they are counted on the night.

    28. Fiona says:

      @ Tony Jensen

      It is possible because they write the rules

    29. CardiffJock says:

      Hello from a Scot in Wales, voting Plaid of course.

      Would LOVE to see Murphy and Murray go , but they will be tough to topple as SNP wasn’t 2nd in 2010 in those constituencies. Still if both the Alexanders and Margaret Curran go, that’d be pretty special as far as ‘Portillo moments’ as concerned.

      More attempted project fear will flow over the next week – Miliband tried it himself last night – but 40+ seats a real target (talk of 50+ or even 59 – much as I’d go bananas – sets SNP up to be spun as somehow having fallen short).

      All need to avoid hubris and fight, fight, fight. Be determined and keep up the effort right up until polling day.

      Talking of hubris, I have produced a Scottish Election Night Bingo card… but am keeping it firmly in my drawer until after 10pm on 7th.

      Stu, let me know if you’d like a copy – on the proviso you sit on it until Thursday eve (!!)

    30. You and My Comb says:

      @Alex Grant

      If they have seen the Postal Vote they are breaching done regulation and not complying with guidance issued.

      https://commonspace.scot/articles/1229/electoral-administrators-warned-don-t-let-political-agents-keep-tallies-of-postal-votes

    31. Scoatch says:

      Gemma Doyle hanging on? What strange private polling is this?!! I’m going directly to the bookies and taking the 5/1 that’s up for grabs there then.

    32. tartanpigsy says:

      Very sad if some of those chancers remain in place.

      6 days to get the message out to the voters of these constituencies that these people just aren’t fit for purpose!!

    33. Joemcg says:

      Bayonet Davidson?? Fucks sake.

    34. Les Wilson says:

      Well you can well see why all the panic, the expenses look like a very big incentive, to er, say the least.

      Losing these as well as their jobs would certainly effect them disastrously, so how do they react? SNP BAD, it is all they have. I hope voters in these area take a peek here.

      Well done Stu.

    35. Oneironaut says:

      I’d be very very surprised if Labour didn’t try some sort of vote-fiddling here.

      Considering their seats on the Westminster Gravy Train Express, not to mention their entire future in Scotland is at stake. And I very much doubt Jim Murphy would be so high-minded as to not even consider the possibility in order to save his own career.

      Chances are this vote won’t be subject to the same level of close scrutiny by grassroots activists as the referendum was. Though it probably should be…

    36. gerry parker says:

      @Alex Grant .

      Incorrect.

      The person to ask is the returning officer or any of their deputies, do not take information from “a senior party official” as being gospel.

      Then when you do find out the correct information, go back to the senior official and tell them.

      Job done Alert Reader.

    37. Colin says:

      Someone has clearly got their polls a bit screwed up.
      Ashcroft says Branch Manager 17 points behind…..Sun says he is going to win!!

    38. Harry McAye says:

      Got another YouGov survey notification e-mail this morning. Clicked the link and the very first question is about the election, if it were tomorrow etc, but SNP is lumped in beside Plaid Cymru with UKIP on it’s own. A bit of an insult so didn’t bother with it.

    39. Jim Thomson says:

      @Juteman 12:26pm

      the “rules” for absent voting in this election are here:

      http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/175386/Part-D-Absent-voting.pdf

    40. Itchybiscuit says:

      Just received an election leaflet from one J. Murphy telling me that pensioners like myself should be worried about SNP plans to cut my pension.

      I’m 52.

    41. James123 says:

      Here’s some odds from William Hill

      SNP to win 50 or more 4/7
      SNP to 49 or less 5/4

      SNP to win 51 or more 10/11
      SNP to win 46-50 5/2
      SNP to win 41-45 9/2

      Rutherglen (Tom Greatrex) Labour 4/6 SNP 11/10
      Orkney (Alistair Carmichael) Lib Dem 1/6 SNP 7/2
      West Dunbartonshire (Gemma Doyle) Labour 5/1 SNP 1/9
      Berwick (Michael Moore) Con 6/5 Lib Dem 2/1 SNP 9/4
      Dunfriesshire (David Mundell) Con 8/13 SNP 5/4
      East Renfrewshire (Jim Murphy) Labour 11/10 SNP 8/11
      Edinburgh South (Ian Murray) Labour EVS SNP 10/11
      Glasgow North EAst (Willie Bain) Labour 1/2 SNP 6/4
      Glasgow South West (Ian Davidson) Labour 9/2 SNP 1/8
      Glenrothes (Lindsay Roy) Labour 7/4 SNP 2/5
      Kirkcaldy (Gordon Brown) Labour 12/5 SNP 3/10
      Motherwell (Frank Roy) Labour 11/4 SNP 1/4

      As you can see William Hill is predicting that the SNP will win 7 of these 12 seats. One stands out in particular, Ian Davidson’s Glasgow South West seat, the SNP are 1/8 to win this, where did the Sun get these odds?

    42. Jim Thomson says:

      @Juteman 12:26pm

      Sorry, clicked on “submit” too quickly there.

      If he did say that then there are only a couple of conclusions.

      One, he’s lying;
      he could have been party to “helping” people fill them in;
      he has access to the ballot boxes and their contents;
      he has friendly people in his polling area who are looking at them as they are opened;
      the place where the PVs are being opened isn’t abiding by the rules.

      I sincerely hope he’s lying for effect.

    43. galamcennalath says:

      47 would be brilliant!

      But please, oh please …. can we have one more? Murphy be gone!

    44. Glamaig says:

      @Juteman
      I heard that too. He said he had seen the postal votes. 12:18pm, Radio Scotland.

    45. Fireproofjim says:

      Kirriereoch
      Don’t worry about the”Shetland card”
      In the event of any form of separation from Scotland, Shetland would not be entitled to any of the oil fields. It would form an enclave within Scottish waters with a ten mile sea limit. Lots of fish perhaps but no oilfields in that area.

    46. big jock says:

      I just can’t stand the thought of any Slabour Mps keeping their seats. I hope it’s less than six.

      Some people in my office who were big no voters are voting SNP. Do not understimate the Sun Newspaper. I think unwittingly this has pushed their decision!

    47. Jim Thomson says:

      @panda paws 12:55pm

      The arrangement for postal ballots being handed in at polling stations is that they are collected several times a day and delivered to the counting place where they are then processed as they would be under “normal” PV opening rules (see my earlier response to Juteman)

      They are not kept back until the polling place closes and then returned with the manual ballot boxes. The reason for that is that it would slow down the final count.

    48. HandandShrimp says:

      How could you tell if people were tactically voting by looking at a postal vote?

    49. Dave Rome says:

      Good old Jim. Claimed 9 lots of £145.50 TV licence payment between July 2010 and September 2014. Even tried to claim a tenth, but looks like he had to refund it.

    50. Ferncake says:

      Scoatch @ 1.17pm

      Re Gemma Doyle and West Dunbartonshire, I always maintained that we’d all be fitted with personal jetpacks powered by unicorn shit before Labour were driven from this constituency.

      I hope and pray that these odds and the voters’ nerves hold firm, then I can crack open that bottle of Sweetheart Stout I’ve been saving since 1965 🙂

    51. Spout says:

      Can Ian Davidson go please?
      PLEASE?

    52. Fiona says:

      @ James123

      I don’t understand betting, but I remain puzzled by how this stuff from bookies is portrayed here.

      So far as I know, bookies do not “predict” anything at all. I thought their purpose was to make a “book” which reflects the money placed on different outcomes, such that they make more money than they lose no matter the result. The process is self referential and is unaffected by the external world, except to the degree that the “wisdom of crowds” applies. Is that not correct?

      If it is correct then bookies have no more insight than opinion pollsters: rather less in fact, since those who place bets are self selecting and there is no attempt at a balance reflecting the compositon of the population, nor any mechanism which mitigates the effects of a few very large bets.

      Why does what bookies say matter at all?

    53. Peter says:

      @james 123
      My thoughts exactly
      Odds with all bookmakers go against the suns story,as do aschrofts polls
      Are they actually using ‘private polling’ supplied by labour in each constituency? That’s the only possible way they could reach this conclusion.
      There simply is NO untainted/unbiased poll that can be telling them that murphy is winning east renfrewshire

    54. Craig P says:

      I was enjoying a quiet moment in the lunchtime sun today when a tour group of middle class British ladies came through the park I was in in Edinburgh. It was led by a Scot and as they passed they were talking about the election. ‘Some of the results here are going to be horrific’ she said. Makes you realise there are still people out there who fear and hate the SNP.

      My first feeling was pity for the Scotswoman, whose instinct was to tug her forelock in the presence of her peers. How suffocating to live constantly looking over your shoulder wondering what the English think and trying to ape their opinions. Of course, that could just be an assumption on my part based on my own attitudes – maybe she is a genuine and committed British nationalist.

    55. Jim Thomson says:

      @Glamaig 1:29pm

      He did NOT say he’d seen them. He said he “knows from postal voting”. Quite a different thing.

      iPlayer link is http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/player/b05s7n01 and he says that at just after 19 mins in.

      He would be completely mad to say he’d “seen” them.

    56. Skeptical Tourist says:

      Thing is, looking at those expenses on that site, it seems mostly travel expenses. So Scottish MPs expenses might be much larger than say South East England, so the “above average” labeling is essentially meaningless without weighting for the difficulty of travelling from the constituency in question.

    57. Chic McGregor says:

      Remember exit polls will be allowed unlike for the referendum. This makes any postal vote anomaly much harder to bury.

      Doesn’t mean the postal votes will not ‘surprise’ us again, but the more preemptive leaking the less that ‘surprise’ should be.

      Expect more of same.

    58. Oneironaut says:

      @Ferncake
      “I always maintained that we’d all be fitted with personal jetpacks powered by unicorn shit before Labour were driven from this constituency.”

      If it does happen, can I have one of those jetpacks and a unicorn? 😀

    59. Dr Jim says:

      I’m just reading this stuff about Shetland preferring Westminster government to Scottish
      I was going to point out one or 100 drawbacks to this but I’ve decided to just say, have it if you want it and the best of luck with that
      No scaremongering just…Oh Well

    60. Chic McGregor says:

      I hope our police are proactively investigating possible postal vote fraud, like those South of the Border, where they have already caught Labour at it – again.

      Much harder to do after the event.

    61. James123 says:

      @Fiona

      Why does what bookies say matter at all?

      The Sun’s article was based on bookmakers odds, which is why I listed the actual odds. Bookies odds are not simply calculated by money that is placed on them, they use a variety of information to calculate the most likely outcome of any result and produce odds that reflect that.

    62. pussy nancy says:

      I cannot help being angry at some posters who are actually saying that they will hand deliver their postal votes to their polling stations. If you are prepared to do that, then why for goodness sake did you arrange a postal vote in the first place?

      We know that the system is wide open to abuse and people who arrange a postal vote who are quite clearly able to attend a polling station are simply aiding and abetting it!

    63. lepus timidus scoticus says:

      Hello – long time lurker, first time poster here.

      I’m in the Motherwell and Wishaw constituency and the thought of Frank Roy getting back in makes me shudder.

      He’s the epitome of a Lanarkshire Labour Man – the type of gormless, obedient lobby-fodder the Party likes to see from the Branch Office.

      The last (only?) time I saw him on TV, he was asking some obsequious question designed to prompt a scripted pro-Labour reply from his party’s Minister.

      The only time he’s over come to national attention in 18 years as the local MP was when he insulted his constituents and caused a minor diplomatic incident with the RoI by suggesting that it would be unsafe for the Taoiseach to visit Carfin Grotto on the afternoon of an Old Firm game.

      If we don’t get rid of him now, when will we get rid of him?

    64. Lesley-Anne says:

      I don’t know about the others but down here in Dumfries, Clydesdale and Tweeddale the S.N.P. are knocking themselves out pushing Emma Harper as a superior replacement for Fluffy. 😀

      From everything that I have heard so far regarding canvassing, door knocking etc it seems to be working. It does appear, from the returns they have been getting, that there have been very few folks saying that they will be voting for Fluffy. Not only that but not many are saying they are voting for Labour either and the Lib Dems almost never get a mention, other than for someone to say they used to vote Lib Dem but will be voting S.N.P. on May 7th. 🙂

    65. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “Thing is, looking at those expenses on that site, it seems mostly travel expenses. So Scottish MPs expenses might be much larger than say South East England, so the “above average” labeling is essentially meaningless without weighting for the difficulty of travelling from the constituency in question.”

      MPs have second homes in London. It’s not like they commute every day. Even so, it’s no small feat to rack up an extra £20,000 a year on train or air fares compared to someone who lives in Manchester or Newcastle or Cardiff.

      (And remember, all the MPs who live closer to London don’t need a second home, so their expenses are far lower, reducing the average.)

      A standard off-peak return train ticket from London to Cardiff is £72. The fare to Glasgow is almost twice that, at £140. But to spend an extra £20K a year you’d have to be making that 14-hour round trip SIX TIMES A WEEK.

      The travel part of most MPs’ expenses should be relatively low. Accommodation and staff should make up the bulk of it. There’s simply no way Jim Murphy should be costing taxpayers so much more money than MPs from much further away.

    66. Bob Mack says:

      I will not believe that these spongers can hold their seats.Social media is bursting with dissafected Labour voters stating how unbelievable Miliband has become.
      I have had regular arguments with many of them.Several have posted their intention to vote SNP instead as a protest.that Labour could let the Tories into Downing St.
      The only ones supporting him are those dyed in the wool loyalists who will only change when they have a wooden overcoat.

    67. john ferguson says:

      O/T After watching FMQ yesterday, I am convinced KD either forgot to take her meds (cpz)or she is on the brink of a breakdown. This girl needs help.

    68. Macca73 says:

      I hope it’s not correct and that Jim Murphy loses his seat because the people seeing that record in parliment should understand that they need an MP working for them not taking the money and running!

      I hope and prey it’s a different result and that he’s out on his ear!

    69. Lesley-Anne says:

      HandandShrimp says:

      How could you tell if people were tactically voting by looking at a postal vote?

      That was what I was thinking as well HS. This guy Carlaw is talking through one of the holes that peretrate throughout his body. I’ll leave it up to everyone to decide for themselves which particular oriface I am referring to. 😉

    70. Jamie Arriere says:

      Come on Govanites, get the Choob oot his Chair!

    71. Cadogan Enright says:

      I’ve got one more set of ‘not-in’ canvass sheets to do in Troon tonight.

      If anybody wants help 9am thru 9pm in East Renfrewshire for the next few days let me know – its only a 20 minute commute.

    72. North Chiel says:

      O/T , Today’s “quote” from “Mr democracy” David Cameron
      ” Ed Milliband propped up by the SNP NOT GOVERNING ON
      BEHALF OF THE WHOLE COUNTRY “.
      That’s “RICH” coming from “a Tory toff” .I suppose his “whole of the country”
      Really refers to RUK , as only one solitary Tory MP in Scotland ?

    73. Free Scotland says:

      This, the day after the Sun contaminates the hitherto flawless SNP campaign by declaring its support for our cause?

      Anybody who trusts a rag like that to make an accurate prediction of holds and gains in this election could have a future in the Monster Raving Loony party.

    74. Anagach says:

      I worked in London for 7 years and stopped just last year. It was a weekly commute – using plane down Monday – plane back Friday from Edinburgh, mix of easyjet to Stanstead and BA to/from city. My travel budget per year came to around £ 8,000 on Travel, which included lost tickets (weather/cancellations) and a 46 week working year. So I wonder how that compares to the MPs travel budgets.

    75. Fred says:

      Kezia has the wee angry face, the faux outrage & that twisted rhetoric so beloved of Slab leaders, which has worked wonders for SNP recruiting figures. 🙂

    76. manandboy says:

      Any security company in Europe would always advise a client with a security vulnerability to take immediate steps to make it secure. It has been known for many years now, that Postal Votes represents a very serious opportunity for voting fraud. Yet the Electoral Commission do nothing about it. Conclusion – as an agency of the Unionist Establishment, it is not in the interests of the EC to conduct fully secure elections.

      We actually do live in a very corrupt country. The trouble is, most people think you’re a nutter when you speak like that.

    77. Tinto Chiel says:

      It would be most disappointing if Mr Murphy survives. Today I saw a letter signed by him and targeting pensioners in the Hamilton area which said that pensions would not be paid if there was a big vote for the SNP because of the £7.6 billion hole in the Scottish finances following FFA (I know, I know). This has caused worry for the recipient, who contacted an SNP friend for advice.

      Presumably, this will be replicated throughout Scotland. I hope the SNP leadership will skewer this old lie quickly. And SLAB are the ones who accuse us of re-running the referendum!

      What a shoddy little spiv the man is.

    78. manandboy says:

      Is it just me or is there anyone else out there who has no difficulty making a connection between MP’s who fiddle expenses and take all kinds of backhanders on the one hand but deny any fiddling with voting on the other.

    79. Kenny says:

      Tinto Chiel – that is a matter for the police. If Murphy is sending letters making false claims to frighten pensioners, then it must be brought up with the police. Anyone else who hears of this should do likewise.

    80. r baxter says:

      what ever the results next Friday we will still be regarded as feral brits.

    81. Taranaich says:

      Quite how anyone could vote for Davidson given how ready he was to sell his own constituents down the water in the event of a Yes vote is beyond me: the man has proven himself to be a clear and present danger to the very people who voted for him.

      Let’s get it done, folks.

    82. Lesley-Anne says:

      Provided my solitary brain cell has *ahem* booted up correctly today Anagach I’d say that you were working longer in London than the M.P.’s were. So I guess we are looking at those only travelling to Edinburgh/Glasgow would, most likely have lower air fare costs. There again I keep forgetting most of our *cough* representatives would be travelling First Class wouldn’t they. 😀

      p.s. I know there is no First Class on the Edi/Ldn and Gla/Ldn routes. 😉

    83. Tinto Chiel says:

      Thanks, Kenny.

      I believe matters are in hand.

      We should all be vigilant at this sensitive time.

    84. Alan McHarg says:

      Sounds like we are being lined up for another stitch up. Maybe this is Murphy’s “late swing” to labour. Sow the seed, just like the referendum, so that the result doesn’t sound as unbelievable. Tried and tested formula…brace yourselves!

    85. Dal Riata says:

      THE BBC’s Panorama recently had a programme showing Nate Silver’s predictions for the UK’s General Election, Nate Silver being seen as something of an election-predicting guru, though his fame comes from his work on US elections.

      He presently has the SNP winning 49 seats, which would be a fantastic result (to get to the 50 number would be something special, let’s wait and see). When the broadcast was made, he had the SNP on 48, so a ‘gain’ of one seat has since occured.

      He predicts the Conservatives to win the most votes (280), but not enough to form a government outright. He has Labour on 268.

      So, a minority government, then? Or a grand coalition unity government of Conservative and Labour in ‘a time of unprecedented crisis’…? Whatever, we’ll be finding out soon enough.

      More can be seen here:

      http://fivethirtyeight.com/interactives/uk-general-election-predictions/

    86. Dal Riata says:

      Previous post (above) : that should, of course, be seats (280), not ‘votes‘ (280).

    87. Harry McAye says:

      pussy nancy – I’m planning to hand deliver my Dad’s postal vote when I go to vote and I’ll be insisting I see it go into the ballot box. I don’t trust the post. My Dad is housebound. Had to go and collect his postal documents today after failing to receive it from the first batch sent out. Phoned them Monday, another lot supposed to go out yesterday. Nothing in post today so phoned them to check it was definitely sent out. His name was not on the list! No problems at all for the referendum. So my confidence in the system has been shaken so as I said, hand delivering and I’ll be kicking up a fuss if I don’t see it going into the box myself.

    88. liz says:

      Re postal votes apparently only half of those sent out have been returned in East Ren.

      All the SNP ones I’ve spoken to are handing them in as don’t trust PVs.

      Might be paranoia but doesn’t mean they aren’t out to get you.

    89. bugsbunny says:

      Not so much hangers on, more of a lingering fart that people know about, but don’t want to admit to.

      Stinkers the lot of them.

      Stephen.

    90. Lesley-Anne says:

      Dal Riata says:

      Previous post (above) : that should, of course, be seats (280), not ‘votes‘ (280).

      Think I preferred it when you said votes myself Dal. 😀

    91. Glamaig says:

      @Jim Thomson
      I listened again and youre right. An example of reconstructed memory using the perceived meaning rather than the actual words used. I assume what he has been doing is asking people who have already voted? Easy for the casual listener who is not familiar with campaigning practices to misconstrue what he is saying there.

    92. pussy nancy says:

      Harry McAye –
      I have every sympathy for your predicament as the vote is obviously for your father and I admire your intention to follow its every move. I just cannot get my head round able bodied people feeding a possibly fraudulent system. It’s like handing your door keys to a burglar. Trouble is apparently, the fraud is happening well before any of the ballots are even sent out (or not, in your father’s case!)

    93. Stolobenskaya says:

      Interesting to see Gordon diligently log travel expenses as low as 75p while declaring receipt of e.g. £30,105.46 in flights, transport and accommodation for self and staff for single speech in China (for which also paid £61,286.29).

      And why on earth did Jim Murphy receive nearly £45k from PriceWaterhouse Coopers, £12,389 from the Australian government and £1,850 from the Norwegian government?

    94. David Innes says:

      This election is getting more bizarre by the day. I’m in Edinburgh South and Ian Murray is seeking reelection. I’ve lived here for nearly 50 years, and never seen so many leaflets from Labour for any election- we even had a team of young people canvassing one day.
      This part of the constituency is not what could be described as traditional Labour territory – but, to be fair, what is these days?
      However, the latest leaflet is a cracker. It highlights the bar chart result of the Ashcroft opinion poll on 20th April, with a 3 point lead for the SNP over Labour. and the Tories third on 16%
      Now, I’m not an expert on advertising, but surely it’s not terribly clever to admit you’re losing 6 days before election day, or to remind voters that your opponent has increased their share of the vote by about 30% since you got elected?
      I also got a leaflet from the Tories, claiming that it is a 2-horse race between them and the SNP – obviously their candidate hadn’t got around to checking the opinion poll!!

    95. Barontorc says:

      Murphy’s expenses, like any other UK MP, for travel purposes, will be covered by a UK Gov credit card,eg.,I saw my former MP’s UK Gov BA Credit Card, so presumably there will be a rail card version.

      How they pay for their ‘flippable’ accommodation, staff costs power and rent may have to be by their own reclaimable funding; furniture and food, disposables and Irn-Bru likewise and this is where the fiddle will take place.

      Look at the main Scottish culprits’ returns and scratch your head in turn. Angus McNeil lives in the Western Isles, not bloody East Renfrewshire or leafy bloody Edinburgh with airports 15 mins drive away, yet, Angus McNeil’s expenses are a mere fraction of these other two ‘very costly’ prize muppets. Troughers, big time.

      Work it out!

    96. Matt says:

      @DavidInnes : I’m also in Edin South and the first leaflet I got from Ian Murray said it was a two-horse between Lab and Con and that “SNP can’t win here”! I think Murray is hoping for a tactical vote and that he can win over enough Tories on the back of “Haygate”.

      In other news, there was an Ashcroft poll out today showing that Emma Harper’s lead on Mundell has grown. Not sure I trust Ashcroft though.

    97. Joan Edington says:

      Not that I really want to support Michael Moore but his figure for early day motions is not really relevant. For most of the parliamentary term he was Secretary of State for Scotland so, as such, was not allowed to submit or vote on early day motions. This would put him in with the 3 who had more good than bad.

    98. Diane says:

      Postal Votes handed into a polling place WILL NOT go into a ballot box. They are given to the Senior Presiding Officer (of which I am one, nothing like keeping an eye on proceeding from the inside). They are then, as mentioned above, collected by the Election Team staff several times during the day and taken to the counting place so the signatures can be verified before the count begins. Numbers handed in have to be recorded and the number of envelopes handed over on each occasion signed for by both the SPO and whoever is collecting them (who will be wearing ID). Please do not hand in a postal vote and expect it to go into a ballot box because it won’t.

    99. Charles Edward says:

      These orange circles really should be red, like old school copy books full of highlighted errors.

      Teachers are expected to highlight these errors.
      We pay them to correct and improve.
      Some say they deserve better pay and conditions.
      Who decides whether this is important? Who has it within their remit to effect changes like this?

      I find it disappointing to think that while a child is encouraged to achieve beyond their current abilities daily in schools across this brilliant country we are burdened by a stratum of below average decision makers dumbing down our highly educated society.

      When I talk about high education here I’m not necessarily referring to all the PHDs and HNDs. I mean the intrinsic wisdom that exists in the people of Scotland, the sort of decency and moral essence that was absent in Cameron’s pitch last night. The guy who asked the question about the lack of a moral dimension in Tory policy was like a big torch in the darkness. Cameron took the question and shielded his eyes while slipping into yet another snake oil answer about creating the best UK citizens his model or algorithm had requested, ..you know..off benefits..paying their debts..getting on their bike..just same as Good old Dave..why shouldn’t it be good enough for them..

      It doesn’t matter what background you come from here the vast majority of us are fortunate to have some decency in us. This is part of being Scottish. Most of us can understand that if someone becomes homeless it might not simple be the result of
      ‘Abuse or some such. .’
      The compassion we have for humanity should not be eroded because our well turned out PM says so.
      Immigrants with no social links and civic attachment deprived of any assistance in the form of benefits will have to eat.
      For some of those people they can’t go home because we bombed the shit out of their homes and their workplaces.
      Ed didn’t appear to be that different on these issues.

      This goes back to the orange v red dot corrections.
      Do you feel happy with these report cards?
      Would you feel happy if these were the report cards of the teachers who teach your kids?
      Would you feel happy if this was the application displayed by an employee of your business?

      How do you think a German, Swiss or French politician would feel about having a report like this?

      We must hold these positions to account. Those who fill these posts should be accountable. Their performance will be assessed. They will not be allowed to carry on with this lack of commitment to a very important job. We will find suitable replacements.

      People all over the world elect to bring their children here to be educated.
      IT IS NOT BECAUSE THEY WANT BELOW AVERAGE.

      But what about those born and bred here who maybe didn’t get the whole school thing, didn’t go to Uni. Most of them still understand what good effort means. And most feel a degree of shame if their inadequacies are exposed.
      We deserve to have inspirational people as leaders in our communities. We need it now more than ever.

      What it means to be a public servant is being redefined, didn’t you get the memo?

    100. Effijy says:

      Rev you must take out newspaper adverts presenting Dim Jim’s performance and advertising the Wings web site.

      We have got to spend some of the funds to get that lying Creep
      out of politics. Spend spend spend!

      Money well spent to have him exorcised !

    101. gpspeirs says:

      Why would Alan Massie pay Jim Murphy £14,500?

    102. madscot125 says:

      Would just like to mention that Frank Roys expenses last year were only £23k or so. He racked up an astonishing £164k average in his first 3 years. I looked into him personally as he is my MP in Motherwell and Wishaw. He is a Labour MP sitting on one of the biggest industrial wastelands in Scotland and has done nothing to get people into work. Sorry Frank but your time is up. Please leave.

    103. rab dornan says:

      Westminster gravy train, anyone entering this “Wormhole” will loose their moral compass, to be replaced by greed and the 2Mantra2. im alright Jack!!

    104. rab dornan says:

      Westminster gravy train, anyone entering this “Wormhole” will loose their moral compass, to be replaced by greed and the “Mantra” Im alright Jack!!



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