Friday, 25 June 2010

The Scottish Tories

The Scottish conservatives have given their strategy and communications man the heave-ho, stating "financial constraints" as the reason.

Michael Crow, formerly an STV presenter, was only appointed in January when it was said he would bring a 'huge amount of media and political experience' to the party.

The Scottish tories' election campaign was a disaster and it seems Mr Crow is the fall guy. But losing him appears to be the least of their troubles as it's common knowledge that the party is fighting for its financial survival. Its main donors have withdrawn funding and it has been forced out of their Edinburgh Princes Street offices to a town house.

It is understood the decision to sack Mr Crow was taken by the Scottish tories' executive committee, the membership of which includes Annabel Goldie (pictured), David Mundell, their only MP and a junior Scotland Office minister. It would seem the sacking has caused division in the ranks.

All this makes me wonder if Annabel Goldie will be the next to go or will she hang on until after the Scottish parliament elections next year? Lord Sanderson of Bowden, 77, is currently chairing a review into the Scottish tories' future. I suggest they disband. Scotland needs a right of centre party with no allegiances to Westminster.


cynicalHighlander said...

Should the Tories in Scotland not be be put on the Red List of endangered species and the last remaining MP be put in Edinburgh Zoo to preserve for all to see before they become extinct. Pleasant dreams.

subrosa said...

Now there's an idea CH. Mind you, who would fund their stay?

Pleasant dreams to you too.

Anonymous said...

Mr Muddle in Edinburgh Zoo... He'd frighten the penguins!

All the parties need to extract themselves from their London control.

Mrs Goldie was an effective enough opposition leader when she was dealing with matters herself, but when London started telling her what direction to go in, she messed up. She was being advised by people who'd never set foot in Scotland and had no idea what was going on.

On one occasion the PO had to remind her that the matter she was taking up with the FM was a Westminster matter....


DougtheDug said...

But losing him appears to be the least of their troubles as it's common knowledge that the party is fighting for its financial survival.

It would be wonderful if the Scottish Tories crashed and burned but the fly in the ointment is that there is no such thing as the, "Scottish Conservative Party", as like the Labour party there is only one monolithic single party across the UK.

You won't find the, "Scottish Conservative Party", on the Electoral Commissions register of political parties.

Under Electoral Commission rules poltical parties can register separate, "Accounting Units", to submit their financial statements individually to the Electoral Commission under the banner of a single party and an, "Accounting Unit", is defined on the Electoral Commission web site as, "A constituent or affiliated organisation that is responsible for its own financial affairs separately from those of a political party's central organisation.".

However there is no single Scottish Accounting unit for the Conservative Party in Scotland. It's all done on a Westminster constituency basis. (This is an Excel spreadsheet. The Conservative Party accounting units are on their own tab.)

So since there is no, "Scottish Conservative Party", and no unitary Scotland wide accounting unit within the Conservative Party then I don't see how they can go bankrupt even as an accounting unit.

I suggest they disband. Scotland needs a right of centre party with no allegiances to Westminster.

The problem, Subrosa is that they can't disband as they are not a separate party. They would have to leave the Conservative Party individually without assets and then form a new party. It's not a question of allegiance to Westminster the, "Scottish", Conservatives are the Conservatives.

Apogee said...

Just a passing thought. If Scotland
becomes independent, would that mean that the Tory party and labour party north of the border would cease to exist?

subrosa said...

My error Doug. I was sure the Scottish tories were separate from London although I knew labour wasn't of course.

Therefore, all the noise about the Scottish branch having financial problems is perhaps a little over-egged.

You're right of course, they couldn't be disbanded if they don't exist as such.

Thanks for the comment. Valuable information.

subrosa said...

Now there's a thought Apogee. Maybe Doug or someone with good constitutional knowledge could answer.

DougtheDug said...


In management terms there is a Scottish regional organisation within the Conservative Party and Annabel Goldie heads it. I don't know how much autonomy it has as I can't find a copy of the Conservative Constitution online but it is very definitely not a separate party.

The Conservatives may do some internal accounting where they lump all the Scottish constituency finances together as the Scottish finances and they may have separate bank accounts for use by the party in Scotland but when they report their finances to the Electoral Commission they don't do it using Scotland as an accounting unit. In financial terms Scotland doesn't exist as a region in the Conservative party, nor does England and nor does Wales.

My error Doug. I was sure the Scottish tories were separate from London although I knew labour wasn't of course.

Don't worry about it, I found out the hard way myself. I started off looking for a Scottish Labour Party constitution in the days of McConnell in order to find out what autonomy he had from London. I believed there was a Scottish Labour Party and there was a Scottish Labour Party Leader. It was only several weeks into the fruitless search that I slowly started to realise that there was no such thing and I was hunting a media invention.

It was several weeks after that before the thought struck me, "What about the Scottish Conservative Party and the Scottish Lib Dems?", and of course neither of them exists as a separate party either.

Billy said...

Like Doug I have known this for a while now and anyone who has read anything I have had to say on this will know that I always call the unionist parties "English-funded and run parties" because that is exactly what they are.

These parties would struggle at elections without being funded from England. The SNP should stop calling them the London parties and should call them the English parties as most of the people of Scotland are unaware of this fact.

The more people become aware of this the more they are likely to listen to and vote for a Scottish party over a party funded and run from another country. You would not get people in any other country voting for political parties funded and run from another country and that includes England.

If Scotland became independent then these unionist parties would have to form and register as Scottish parties in Scotland.

The tag for Goldie beneath this post "Scotland will do as it is told" shows the priorities of these English-funded and run "Scottish" politicians.

subrosa said...

Doug, I think your two posts deserve one of their own because I'm sure many Scots don't realise that. If you've no objection I'll do that next week.

Anonymous said...

Can I just say thanks to Doug and Billy for adding to my knowledge considerably.

I had a hazy idea of the Tory situation, but I was unaware that the Liberals were in the same situation.

Would that not make it nigh impossible for the Libs to join with Labour in a coalition should Labour be the largest party in Scotland after the next general election here, given the fact that they are in coalition with the Tories in England?

subrosa said...

I was possibly overconfident thinking the tories were a separate party Billy. Weren't the Scottish Conservatives and Unionists one? Somehow, somewhere a long time ago I was either told or read the tories were a separate entity from their London party.

My fault for not checking it out recently.

subrosa said...

Great question Tris. I have no idea though and wouldn't even hazard a guess.

Anon said...

Happy holidays.

- Aangirfan

subrosa said...

Thank you Aangirfan. I won't behaving mine for a while yet - now I've bought at iPad. :)

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