SCOTTISH SOCIALIST PARTY
CONTACT: Richie Venton 07828278093
SSP calls for pro-independence, anti-cuts 'Yes Alliance' for 2015 Westminster elections
THE Scottish Socialist Party is campaigning for a Yes Alliance to contest the Westminster elections next May. This was agreed at the recent SSP national conference.
SSP west of Scotland regional organiser Richie Venton said:"The savage cuts to benefits, pay, jobs and people's basic democratic rights announced in the wake of the Referendum has driven increased numbers of Scots to favour independence. And even those still unconvinced of full-scale self-government are strongly in favour of vastly increased powers for Scotland over benefits, taxation and measures to protect Scotland from the Twin Tory Coalition onslaught.
"Many of the same people want to punish Labour for their collaboration with the Tories in blocking independence, leaving us at the tender mercies of Cameron's dictatorship of and for the obscenely rich.
"The SSP is conducting a systematic campaign - in the streets, communities, workplaces and through local public meetings - for powers for the Scottish parliament to transform our lives, including the ability to set a £10 Scottish minimum wage for all at 16; establish a benefits system that supports people instead of demonising them; to ban fracking and take the Big Six energy giants and the green energy sector into democratic public ownership, to banish profiteering and fuel poverty; to repeal all the Thatcherite anti-trade union laws; and to implement progressive taxation of the very rich and big business to fund decent public services.
"We have these distinctive policies, often radically different from those of the SNP. For that reason alone, we are not prepared to give a blank cheque to the SNP in the 2015 elections. We will not be calling on people to just vote SNP and forget their differences with them on key matters of policy.
"However, we are stepping up our appeal to the SNP, Greens and people of no political party who made up the very successful Yes campaign to sustain that united front in the Westminster elections. That's what our recent SSP national conference agreed unanimously.
"We want a pro-independence, anti-cuts alliance that agrees one candidate in each constituency, to challenge the Tories and Labour, appealing to not only the 45% who voted Yes, but to the No voters who want a radically fairer distribution of wealth and power.
"We believe the beauty of such an alliance is that it would appeal to outraged, disenfranchised Labour voters in a way that the SNP on its own never will, with socialists, greens, SNPers and independents standing as candidates in an agreed allocation of seats.
"And my message to the forthcoming SNP Conference is that they need to recognize the growing support for this idea at grassroots level. For instance, I have spoken at several local Yes groups that support such a multiparty alliance, including many people who have joined the SNP recently.
"The SSP will never drop its commitment to an independent socialist Scotland, but we are eager to reach agreement with others in the interests of resisting Tory attacks on the working class, and of keeping the flames of social justice and independence alight, through a pro-independence, anti-cuts alliance for May 2015."
For any further info or comment contact:
Richie Venton, SSP west of Scotland regional organiser