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Scottish Raj to lose power at home, but not in their colony - yet.

Labour faces meltdown as SNP heads for power-News-Politics-TimesOnline

The Populus poll puts the Nationalists ahead of Labour in both the first-past-the-post and proportional-representation sections. They are on track to win 50 seats in the 129-seat Scottish Parliament, seven more than Labour. The Liberal Democrats would have 18 MSPs, the Conservatives 17 and the Greens one.

If the SNP leader Alex Salmond becomes First Minister, Mr Brown would face taunts that he would be a Scot in power in England whose writ did not run on issues such as health, education and transport in Scotland. And Mr Brown, if he becomes Prime Minister, would also be swiftly reminded that the Conservatives secured narrowly more votes in England than Labour at the last general election – leaving him open to claims that he has a mandate in neither country.

Today’s poll comes amid increasing signs that Mr Brown is unlikely to face a serious challenge for the Labour leadership. Some Blairite ministers have tried vainly to keep alive the prospect of a challenge by David Miliband, the Environment Secretary. Tony Blair is reported by friends to be irritated by what he sees as misguided attempts by some of his own allies to damage Mr Brown, believing they can only harm his party’s attempt to win a fourth term.

Mr Brown has tried to defuse opposition to a Scot running England by making a series of speeches about Britishness in recent years. It is possible that three Scots, Mr Brown, Alistair Darling, who could become Chancellor, and John Reid, who could stay as Home Secretary, will fill three of the main offices of state by the summer.


If the SNP's independence referendum is passed, Gordhelpus and Ming lose their seats. GB's mandatory "Britishness" lessons only apply to schools in England

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