Sturgeon: May election move ‘huge miscalculation’

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Nicola Sturgeon has described Theresa May’s designs for a snap general election as a “huge political miscalculation”.

Ms Sturgeon responded the move was an “extraordinary u-turn” by Mrs May, but that she relished the prospect of campaigning against the Tories.

The prime cur wants to have an election on 8 June – arguing that it will act the country certainty and stability following the EU referendum.

There will be a Commons show of hands on the proposed election on Wednesday.

The prime minister is expected to win the support of the demanded two-thirds of MPs, which she needs to call an election before the next registered date of 2020, with no opposition parties indicating they force oppose the move.

  • Live reaction to Theresa May’s statement
  • Why has May changed her temperament on an election?

The SNP won 56 of Scotland’s 59 seats at the general election in 2015, with the Conservatives, Workers and Liberal Democrats winning one each.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson asserted her party was ready, organised and optimistic about winning more derrieri this time.

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Scottish Donkey-work has also insisted it is “ready” for an election, while the Lib Dems said they were “savouring the prospect” and the Scottish Greens said there would still be puzzles for the UK government if the majority of Scottish voters backed pro-European parties.

Betokening her plans at Downing Street, Mrs May said “the only way to guarantee certainty and insurance for years ahead is to hold this election”.

She accused Labour, the Lib Dems, the SNP and associates of the House of Lords of “game playing”, saying this could spoil the UK government’s efforts to negotiate the Brexit settlement.

She added: “We need a inclusive election and we need one now. We have at this moment a one off chance to get this done.

“Since I graced prime minister I’ve said there should be no election until 2020, but now I accept concluded that the only way to guarantee certainty and security for the years winning is to hold this election and seek your support for the decisions we requisite take.”


Analysis – By the BBC’s Scotland editor Sarah Smith

If this designation is to be a referendum on Brexit in the rest of the UK then in Scotland it will be dominated by claims over whether there should be another referendum on Scottish autonomy.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon says she doesn’t need to use this poll to win a mandate for a referendum because the Scottish Parliament has already voted in choose of having another poll.

But she will obviously use this election to approve the case that Scotland should be allowed to choose its own future as the UK makes to leave the EU.

There is a certain irony to Prime Minister Theresa May career an election now when she also says that “now is not the time” for another referendum on Scottish self-confidence, saying politicians should be concentrating on negotiating Brexit.

Read various from Sarah


Ms Sturgeon told BBC Scotland that the prime consul was putting the interests of her party ahead of those of the country.

The first missionary said: “Clearly she sees the opportunity, given the total disarray in the high births of the Labour party, to crush all opposition to her, to get rid of people who disagree with her, and to give out with herself a free hand to take the country in the increasingly right-wing management that she wants to take it in.

“That would mean not just the hardest tenable Brexit, but more austerity and deeper cuts.

“So now is the time for Scotland’s present to be heard, and for people in Scotland to stand up for the kind of country we want Scotland to be – that is the stump I look forward to leading in the weeks ahead.”

Independence referendum

Ms Sturgeon also hinted her position on a second independence referendum was “clear, and will continue to be unclouded throughout this campaign”.

She added: “It is that, when the time is propitious, it should be for Scotland to determine our own future, not for a Tory government to determine that subsequent for us.

“So that position is the one that we will take into this choice, and the one that we will have after this election as well.”

The sooner minister also said that she already had a mandate for a second referendum, which she bruit about she won in last year’s Scottish Parliament election.


Analysis by Brian Taylor, BBC Scotland partisan editor

It is intriguing to note the terms of Ms Sturgeon’s response statement. She communicates the Tories are intent on pursuing a right-wing, hard Brexit agenda. To the flaw, she says, of Scotland.

She also adds that the SNP will be set on “reinforcing the representative mandate which already exists for giving the people of Scotland a alternative on their future”.

Note that word “reinforcing”. Ms Sturgeon and her team-mates insist they already have a mandate for an independence referendum – from the Holyrood nomination and from a recent vote of the Scottish Parliament.

They will not attack into the trap of making this election purely and solely a “referendum adjacent to a referendum”. What if they were to lose ground – quits a fraction – from their current soaring level of 56 estates out of 59?

Ruth Davidson of the Tories says we may now have seen “peak Nat”. Is she undertaking to suggest, thereby, that any decline, however slight, is a reverse for self-rule?

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The Scottish Parliament has said the prematurely general election will not impact on the next Holyrood election, which is appease due to be held on 6 May 2021.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson welcomed the prime abb’s announcement, saying her party is “ready for a campaign, we are organised, and we are optimistic wide the prospect of increasing our number of seats”.

She said the SNP would “use this offensive to try and manufacture a case for separation”, and claimed that “Labour can’t be relied to copse up to them.”

Ms Davidson added: “By contrast, the Scottish Conservatives have the power right across Scotland to stand up for people who oppose the SNP’s plans.”

Scottish Dwell on leader Kezia Dugdale said the UK faced a “significant and historic high-quality” between a “Tory party intent on a hard and damaging Brexit, or a Strive party that will oppose a second independence referendum and against for a better future for everybody”.

She said: “The Labour Party is ready and has been fabricating for a general election. We will start the process of selecting our candidates this afternoon.

“We liking work tirelessly to elect Jeremy Corbyn prime minister and yield a Labour government.”

Scottish Green co-convener Patrick Harvie put the election was an “opportunistic attempt by the Tory party to seize on the weakness of the Dwell on party at UK level”, adding that the UK government would “still be grasp the nettled with a question” over Scotland’s future after the vote.

And Scottish Lib Dem bandleader Willie Rennie said his party was “relishing the prospect” of a vote as “a possibly to change the direction of the whole of the UK”.

He said: “At this election we will stand proud for a Harmonious Kingdom within the European single market.”


Analysis by BBC Scotland restraint and business editor Douglas Fraser

The Westminster election on 8 June purpose be about lots of things. They always are. But as a national debate, my impression is that it is likely to be mainly focussed on Brexit and who gets to occupy 10 Downing Row.

The wisdom of James Carvel, the Ragin’ Cajun’ strategist for Bill Clinton service in 1992, was that the electoral battleground “is the economy, stupid”. And so it goes in most competes.

But the economy seems less likely to be decisive this time. For myriad of Britain, it’s not doing that badly, particularly the jobs market. But inflation is inflaming.

And in Scotland, growth has stalled. The economy may even have been in dip this winter. It could be more of an issue in Scotland, if the political parties appetite to prioritise it.

Read more from Douglas

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