13 May 2015

Not necessarily the evil witches of the north

Surprisingly favourable comment from CityAM, not an organ which usually takes a sensible view on matters Scottish:

The City has well-developed relationships with Westminster’s established powerbrokers, but less experience working with Scottish nationalists. Some might feel concerned that a party with such populist support, which has won hearts and minds in traditionally working class, left wing areas, will now be so prominent in Westminster politics. 
And make no mistake, influential they will be. The SNP was already represented on the Treasury Select Committee and will now be seeking places on the Business, Energy, and Defence Committees among others.
So what exactly can the City expect?
First, the SNP group will not be a destructive force at Westminster, as some commentators have suggested. They may not believe in the institution they’ve been elected to, but under leader Nicola Sturgeon, her deputy Stewart Hosie MP, and Westminster leader Angus Robertson MP, they respect Parliament and will seek to play a constructive role in holding the government to account.
They recognise the need to be responsible and will speak to business to understand the matters of state they now have to scrutinise. The party’s Holyrood track record shows that it is keen to work with business in order to support economic growth, and so doors should be open both ways.
Second, the new caucus of SNP MPs contains some experienced businesspeople like former Deutsche Bank executive Ian Blackford and ex-Standard Lifer Michelle Thomson, while economist George Kerevan, lawyers Joanna Cherry QC and Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh, and of course former first minister Alex Salmond bring intellectual rigour. They, and others in the party, can be allies for business.
Salmond will inevitably be a major figure, possibly chairing a Select Committee such as Energy, which would meet his own political interests and would also give Scottish energy businesses a voice at Westminster, albeit not in government. But make no mistake. Sturgeon is the SNP leader, so overlook her at your own risk.

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