Nicola Sturgeon has warned that Labour must up the powers on offer to Scotland in the Smith Commission as the price of SNP support to form the UK government in next year’s election.
Given that it is highly unlikely that either Red or Blue Tories will honour their “vow” by delivering more than a massively diluted mockery of the Smith Commission’s recommendations, there is absolutely no realistic possibility that British Labour will deliver more than the paltry offering that is already on the table. Sturgeon is, of course, perfectly well aware of this. But it is right that she should use whatever power may be granted to the SNP by the electorate to advance Scotland’s interests.
There was a time when British Labour supposed that it a right to demand the unconditional support of any left-of-centre party. Those days are long gone. It is only the lack of an SNP-like alternative party in England which allows British Labour to survive at all in the context of UK politics. The Westminster elites will have to accept that there is a price to be paid for continued survival. Curiously, that price is likely to involve honouring principles which were once the very basis of British Labour’s existence.
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