“WE will not allow Scotland’s future to be limited” by Unionist parties, Keith Brown told the SNP conference today.
The Scottish Government Party kicks off its 87th annual conference this weekend, with decisions again made online due to Covid conditions. In recent days, The National has revealed how the program included motions to create an independent Scottish civil service, an import ban on products made from fossil fuels and calls for increased salaries for councilors.
The first session begins this afternoon, with Brown, the deputy party leader, ready to address the delegates.
He is expected to rally party supporters, saying the organization is in “great shape” after the success of the spring ballot in the Scottish Parliament elections – which saw him regain a record share of the vote – and has a “great determination” despite difficult circumstances.
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Laying the groundwork for future campaigns, Brown is expected to say, “The past two years have been tough for all of us, and they’ve made us all think about what really matters in our lives. As a responsible government, the SNP’s first priority has been – and remains – to guide Scotland to safety during the pandemic.
“While the entire Westminster system is clearly irreparably broken down, we are focused on delivering services to people in all corners of Scotland.
“And as we look to the future, we will urge Scots to think about what kind of country they want to live in once the pandemic is over.
“Who is best placed to make decisions that affect their lives. Who is most committed to making Scotland a fairer and more prosperous nation and to tackling key issues like the climate emergency.
“We will not allow Scotland’s future to be limited by the relentless negativity, the don’ts and the utter lack of vision of the Unionist parties.
“Our brief for the future of Scotland is based on optimism and ambition.
“A belief that our nation has what it takes to be a successful independent nation.
“And the belief that the people who live here can make better decisions about their lives rather than leaving Westminster in control.”
“It is the case that we will do in the months to come – and it is the case that will lead us to independence.”
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The conference will run until Monday, when party leader and Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon is expected to speak just after noon. Brown’s welcome address begins at 2 p.m. today, kicking off a four-hour session covering topics such as women’s security and continued links with European institutions. Deputy Prime Minister John Swinney will deliver his speech to the conference tomorrow afternoon before delegates discuss the civil service resolution.
As revealed in The National, it aims to ensure that ‘to ensure that all parts of Scotland receive a fair share of the benefits of independence, then the conference proposes that a Scottish government SNP ensure that all major Public service jobs are distributed among the 32 regions of the council. in proportion to the population of these areas ”.
He proposes that “rural, remote or disadvantaged” areas be allocated a higher per capita proportion of these jobs to boost their economies and avoid centralization. This could mean increased employment for Dumfries & Galloway, Inverclyde, Highlands, Scottish Borders and An Na h-Eileanan nan Siar.
MP Ian Blackford, party leader in Westminster, will deliver his speech on Sunday afternoon.
The conference comes after a YouGov poll for The Times found that although Sturgeon’s approval rating has fallen nearly 40 points since its peak last year, she remains by far the most successful political leader. most popular in Scotland.
In August of last year, Sturgeon’s score was +50, with 72% of voters agreeing she did well in FM, compared to 22% who said she did poorly.
This month it’s gone to a +12 rating, with 53% saying she’s fine and 41% taking the opposite stance.
However, this popularity rating is still well ahead of other Scottish leaders – Tory Douglas Ross fell to -38, Labor’s Anas Sarwar slipped 21 points to -1, Scottish Greens co-leaders Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater are at -38 and LibDem is in the lead Alex Cole-Hamilton is on -16.
Boris Johnson’s popularity rating fell from 17 to -62, with Keir Starmer of Labor also down to -35.