Rather than a focus on the issues that are central to the future of this country – the NHS, zero hour jobs, social security etc – the entire election campaign seems to have revolved around one theme: demonisation of Scotland and the SNP. Even before parliament was dissolved, David Cameron continuously badgered Ed Miliband on whether or not he was prepared to enter any kind of post-election deal with the SNP. Throughout the campaign cycle, Cameron and his cronies have repeated ad nauseam that a minority Labour government backed by the SNP would be ‘illegitimate’. Their reasoning for this is that the SNP are only interested in Scottish independence, and therefore it would be unfathomable to have a party that ‘is dedicated to the destruction of the country’ playing a role in governing the UK.
This, however, is a red herring; a trick the Tories are using to allow themselves to cling onto power. As was to be expected, our right-wing press and the puerile BBC have repeated this claim of illegitimacy unquestioningly. It is as if they have forgotten that Britain is a democracy…or perhaps they just no longer care. If the Scottish electorate vote for the SNP, the party is legitimate, it’s as simple as that. In fact if any party is to be considered illegitimate it should be the Tories, for they are only largely voted for in the south of England, and don’t even try to win over voters in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The contempt they have shown for the Scots in the last few weeks has been appalling, and shows that they merely view us as an English colony; the last remnant of the British Empire.
The reason why so many Scots are voting SNP tomorrow is largely due to disenchantment with the other three main parties, rather than a sudden desire for independence. Unlike the Tories, Labour and Lib Dems, Nicola Sturgeon has an actual vision for the future, based on equality and fairness, care for our most vulnerable, and the elimination of costly and unnecessary nuclear weapons.
Following the election results on Friday, the Murdoch owned media will swing into action, repeating the illegitimacy line and trying to fool the public about the constitutional process – Cameron and his poodle Clegg have already made a start on the latter in the last few days, by stating that the party with the largest number of seats will form the new government. This is false. The governing party will be that which can command the confidence of parliament. Labour with the backing of the SNP, and perhaps other smaller parties such as Plaid Cymru and the Greens can do this.
Come Friday, the battle will be between the Tory-supporting press and the people, as they try to spin the results into a Tory victory. It is crucial that we do not allow Cameron and his right-wing media machine to subvert the democratic process.