How are MSP’s Elected?
The system used to elect MSPs is known as the Additional Member System (AMS). At the May 2016 Scottish Parliament election each voter has two votes.
* With one vote, voters choose between candidates standing in their constituency to elect a constituency MSP. The candidate who receives the largest number of votes in the constituency wins the seat. This voting system is called first-past-the-post. There are 73 constituencies for Scottish Parliament elections.
* The other vote is for a political party, or for a candidate standing as an individual, within a larger electoral area known as a region. (A region is formed by grouping together between eight and ten constituencies.) There are eight Scottish Parliament regions and each region has seven additional seats in the Parliament. The MSPs chosen to fill these 56 additional seats are known as regional MSPs. Regional MSPs are allocated seats using a formula that takes into account the number of constituency seats that a party has already won in that region, as well as the number of regional votes an individual or party received.
Prof Curtice – Echoes of the Spymaster Daniel Defoe in his pronouncements – Another Snake in the Grass?
Shaping the voting electorate’s intentions in favour of political parties against each other is a well practised strategy used by politicians and lobbyists. But secret agenda’s intent on manipulating the minds of voters should not be used by political pundits and commentators who lay claim to the title, “honest John”. It is evident from recent public statements that Prof Curtice is embarked on a mission to ensure an election outcome meeting his intent. SNP voters should bear the foregoing in mind at the time they place their votes. It is ludicrous to expect an SNP supporter to vote for a party other than the SNP. Lend both votes to the SNP.
The activities of the Spymaster Daniel Defoe come to mind:
“In September 1706, in the critical run-up to the Union, Defoe was sent to Edinburgh, where he became an adviser to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, and to committees of the Scottish Parliament: from where he could feed inside information back to his controllers in England. He wrote pamphlets selling the benefits of the Act of Union to Scots, usually anonymously or while pretending to be a Scot: and often using arguments that directly contradicted those he used to sell the Act of Union to the English. His spin continued into what represented itself as an objective history of the Act of Union (but in fact was anything but) published in 1709.”
Set out below are two examples of the unwelcome involvement of Prof Curtice in the political affairs of Scotland.
21 January 2014: Prof Curtice works with the BBC manipulating the outcome of the referendum
The ScotCen Social Research conducted a survey interviewing 1,497 adults between June and October 2014. Speaking to the report, Prof John Curtice, said “voters want to hear about the economic and financial consequences of the choice that they make and it is on the outcome of that debate that the result of the referendum is likely to turn.” This is hardly as surprise when the questions asked focused on economic rather than political matters.
A write up of the story on BBC Online also extracts specific questions that focus on voting intentions based on whether Scots will be £500 better or worse off after independence, or whether the Scottish economy will be better or worse. There is no report of the all-important political factors, which is what the independence debate is all about.
It is important to note that the piece included comments from four Scots voters. Only one of them said financial considerations were an important factor when it came to voting on independence. The other three spoke about variations on the theme of who decides how Scotland is run.
Once this segment had been played, the presenter then ignored the voter contributions and turned the discussion straight back to economics, disregarding what the voters had said. Curtice himself then introduced identity as an issue rather than politics, to move the conversation further away from the central political dimension.
The feeling is of there being a clear agenda to frame the Scottish debate firmly in terms of economics, while doing everything possible to confine the politics to the wilderness. The BBC and Prof Curtis are manipulating the Scottish public into focusing on issues that are irrelevant to the concept of independence – namely who should run Scotland.
No matter whether one feels Scotland should be independent, or whether the union should be preserved as it is, all should be concerned that the crux of the independence issue is being airbrushed from the discourse by the media, which is taking its line from entities with vested interests in keeping all structures as they are – which suits Westminster perfectly. http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-25833692
17 April 2016: Prof Curtice (Yet again) seeks to influence the outcome of the Scottish election manipulating party political information
A recent study was commissioned by the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) a left wing motivated organisation headquartered in London (with a Scottish branch.) It is headed by Katie Ghose who is a Labour Party member who has tried on four occasions to be selected as a Parliamentary candidate. Her partner is Andrew Harrop, General Secretary of the Fabian Society. Celebrity ambassador for the ERS is the notorious Dan Snow (married to the richest young lady in the UK). The Scottish branch is staffed by individuals with strong links to the Labour party.
Curtice advised he had collated and analysed recent opinion polls and found that the SNP would win all but three constituencies and be returned firmly as the majority party of government on that vote alone. Speaking to the report he said “SNP voters should give their second vote to another pro-independence party (such as the Greens or the left wing party Rise) to prevent unionist MSPs being let in by the back door.”
The controversial claims of Curtice are designed to weaken the ‘Both Votes SNP’ campaign. The SNP responded to the Curtice study saying voters who followed his advice “risk playing into the hands of those who oppose a fully self-governing Scotland”.
Director of Electoral Reform Society (Scotland), Labour Party stalwart, Willie Sullivan, said “the report is intended as a resource for voters who want to understand the election – but the analysis clearly has implications for the smaller parties whose support could be squeezed by the ‘both votes SNP’ strategy. We think politics should contain lots of different voices, said Sullivan. In the past we have stated our concern about the predominance of a single party in Scottish politics.” Read all about Willie here: http://www.powerbase.info/index.php/Willie_Sullivan
A spokesman for the SNP said: “Only by giving both votes to the SNP can people be sure of returning Nicola Sturgeon as First Minister, leading a re-elected SNP Government in a position to take forward our manifesto plans. While we welcome other parties’ backing for independence, fracturing the pro-independence vote merely risks playing into the hands of those who oppose a fully self-governing Scotland.”
Wings over Scotland investigated the entire matter and revealed a can of worms linked to the labour Party – http://wingsoverscotland.com/reforming-your-principles/