By a Newsnet reporter
Analysis of the most recent Scottish voting intentions shows the SNP now has virtually the same support as that of all three pro-Union opposition parties combined, for the European elections
Polling conducted by ICM for the Scotsman newspaper has revealed that support for the SNP has surged to 43% (+14) since the last EU elections, leaving the party with a 19 point lead over main rivals Labour.
The 43% total is almost identical to the 44% combined total of Labour on 24% (+3), Conservatives on 14% (-3) and the Lib Dems who are on 6% (-6). The Scottish Greens currently have 4% support (-3).
According to analysis of the new figures, Scotland could gain its first Asian woman MEP.
Commenting, SNP Business Convener Derek Mackay MSP said:
“Coming on the back of a significant boost in support for Yes, this is extremely welcome news for the SNP.
“This very encouraging poll – after nearly seven years in government – underlines the hard work undertaken by the SNP in representing the interests of Scotland at home and in Europe.
“There is a long way to go and we take nothing for granted, but the strength in SNP support is illustrated by the fact that on these figures Scotland would gain its first woman Asian MEP, with a third SNP member.”
The slump for the Lib Dems has moved Willie Rennie’s party to fifth in Scotland, behind UKIP who are one per cent ahead. If replicated in the EU elections, the poll result would leave the Scottish Lib Dems with no MEPs.
Mr MacKay added: “The poll also shows that Scotland decisively rejects the politics of UKIP – their vote has hardly shifted since 2009, and it comes on the heels of another lost deposit in the Cowdenbeath by-election.
“Westminster is operating to a right-wing UKIP agenda that is threatening to drag Scotland out of the EU and single European market against our will, which only a Yes vote can protect Scotland from.”
The survey also revealed that people in Scotland reject leaving the European Union by a substantial margin of 46 per cent to 33 per cent, which contrasted with results from south of the border which indicated a majority in favour of leaving the EU.
According to the survey, most people in England are in favour of leaving the EU by a margin of 46 per cent to 37 per cent.