Delighted as I am at the number of people choosing to read this blog, regular readers deserve a content warning covering the next week: this blog will turn heavily SNP-internal. Being nominated for the SNP’s Local Government Convener post on their National Executive, this blog will morph into a campaign tool until Sunday morning of the Conference in Inverness when the vote takes place (see pp. 40 & 147 of the handbook). I will temporarily use other social networking sites to the same end.
The vacancy is caused by Cllr. Grant Thoms stepping down after four effective years in the post. Card-carrying SNP members should use this blog as my manifesto for the post and use comments to ask questions, which are particularly welcome from supporters of my opponent. I will publish/answer everything that comes even close to the truth. Readers of other or no political persuasion are welcome to use it as insight into the SNP’s democratic internal workings or to return in a exactly a week’s time when the dust will have settled and ‘normal’ (which is to say far-reaching, esoteric and opinionated) service will have been resumed.
The reason that I have chosen to stand is threefold:
- The election of 363 SNP councillors to become the largest party group in the 2007 election changed the face of Scottish local government and the upcoming 2012 election offers similar opportunities.
- While the SNP enjoys a majority at Holyrood, 69 MSPs are outnumbered by councillors five to one as representatives in day-to-day contact with voters. A successful independence referendum will depend on them all to demonstrate the rightness of independence and the competence of the SNP to deliver it.
- The SNP is still very much a dynamic party of dedicated activists. Unlike others, HQ staff and official support remain tiny. Volunteer posts like LGC remain crucial in informing, co-ordinating and motivating that activism.
Over the next few days, I will be providing:
- A biography/CV outlining strengths and experience for the job
- A manifesto painting a vision for Scottish local government & the SNP’s role
- Arguments detailing some of those ideas and perhaps triggering debate
- More comment on current Scottish politics, community & life (like below)
Even if you’re not a party member with a direct interest in the fray, feel free to join in. We’re all Jock Tamson’s bairns and, as such, have an interest in our country’s future.