Mhairi Black’s maiden speech in the HOC tops 10 million views; Has some words for Tony Blair

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The maiden speech that 20 year old SNP MP Mhairi Black delivered in the House of Commons last week has now received over ten million views online. In it she attacked George Osborne’s benefits cuts and challenged Labour to work with her party in order to create an effective opposition to the Tories. She also pointed out that under Osborne’s new budget, she is the only person in the UK under the age of 21 who is entitled to receive housing benefits.

The BBC said:

It has been watched more than 8 million times on Channel 4 and Buzzfeed’s Facebook pages, with hundreds of thousands of views on newspaper sites, YouTube and the SNP’s own site. On the BBC the story has been viewed 150,000 times.

Mhairi Black’s maiden speech tops 10m online views

SNP Westminster Leader Angus Robertson commented on the UK’s youngest MP:

“Mhairi’s outstanding maiden speech was principled and passionate. She is without a doubt a huge credit to Paisley and to the SNP. The House of Commons listened in silence to its youngest member remind us all why we are sitting in our place and those we were elected to speak for – it is of no surprise that this message had resonance far beyond the walls of Westminster. That millions of people across the UK and abroad watched her speech is staggering.”

Unfortunately – due to Labour’s abstention on the welfare bill and all round lack of integrity – it looks like the SNP are for now the only opposition party of any consequence currently in Westminster.

Since then Mhairi has criticised Tony Blair’s assertion that the SNP are a party of ‘cave men’. The disgraced former PM said:

“It’s the politics of the first caveman council when he pointed with his club across the forest and said ‘they’re the problem, over there, that’s the problem’.”

To which Mhairi responded:

“On any reading of his record, Tony Blair was the one with the primitive policy – dragging the country into an illegal war in Iraq, at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives and causing massive instability to the region, the ramifications of which we continue to live with.

His criticism of the SNP government suggest someone badly out of touch, presumably unaware that SNP poll ratings have reached 60 per cent this month, but we take nothing for granted for the future.”

SNP MP Mhairi Black isn’t happy about Tony Blair calling her party ‘cave men’

Spot on!

The General Election and the Subversion of British Democracy

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.

Nicola Sturgeon’s speech – SNP Conference Glasgow March 28th 2015

From the Scottish National Party Conference currently taking place in Glasgow.

SNP membership today stands at 102,143 members – now the third largest political party in the UK.

Which MP’s voted against bombing Iraq?

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Only 42 MP’s voted against Britain’s new bombing campaign in Iraq yesterday; here is a handy list that can easily be referred back to come election time. It should be noted that immediately following the vote, Iain McKenzie (Labour) was sacked as an aide to the Shadow Defense Secretary, and Mark Reckless (Conservative) has since defected to UKIP, announcing the news this afternoon at the party’s conference. Additionally, if your MP is not on this list, he may not have shown up at all to vote (as mine did).

5 Scottish National Party MPs:

Stewart Hosie (Dundee East)
Angus MacNeil (Na h-Eileanan an Iar)
Angus Robertson (Moray)
Mike Weir (Angus)
Eilidh Whiteford (Banff & Buchan)

6 Conservative MPs:

Richard Bacon (Norfolk South)
John Baron (Basildon & Billericay)
Gordon Henderson (Sittingbourne & Sheppey)
Adam Holloway (Gravesham)
Nigel Mills (Amber Valley)
Mark Reckless (Rochester & Strood)

23 Labour MPs:

Diane Abbott (Hackney North & Stoke Newington)
Graham Allen (Nottingham North)
Dame Anne Begg (Aberdeen South)
Ronnie Campbell (Blyth Valley)
Martin Caton (Gower)
Katy Clark (Ayrshire North & Arran)
Ian Davidson (Glasgow South West)
Paul Flynn (Newport West)
Stephen Hepburn (Jarrow)
Kate Hoey (Vauxhall)
Kelvin Hopkins (Luton North)
Sian James (Swansea East)
Mark Lazarowicz (Edinburgh North & Leith)
John McDonnell (Hayes & Harlington)
Iain McKenzie (Inverclyde)
Austin Mitchell (Great Grimsby)
Grahame Morris (Easington)
George Mudie (Leeds East)
Linda Riordan (Halifax)
Barry Sheerman (Huddersfield)
Dennis Skinner (Bolsover)
Graham Stringer (Blackley & Broughton)
Mike Wood (Batley & Spen)

Others:

1 Liberal Democrat: Julian Huppert (Cambridge)

2 Plaid Cymru MPs: Jonathan Edwards (Carmarthen East & Dinefwr) and Hywel Williams (Arfon)

1 Green MP: Caroline Lucas (Brighton Pavilion)

3 Social Democratic and Labour Party MPs: Mark Durkan (Foyle), Dr Alasdair McDonnell (Belfast South) and Margaret Ritchie (Down South)

1 Respect MP: George Galloway (Bradford West)