Wednesday, February 8, 2023
HomeNews‘Millions struggling’ Sturgeon savaged as 'out of touch' ahead of local elections

‘Millions struggling’ Sturgeon savaged as 'out of touch' ahead of local elections

Mr Sarwar, who has in several instances shared his opposition to formal coalitions with the SNP and Conservatives in town halls, has called on voters to make “different choices” ahead of Thursday’s local elections in Scotland, vowing his party has a plan to address the issues Ms Sturgeon had been unable to solve.

With households across the country hit by soaring prices, he insisted that Scots were being “failed” by two “out-of-touch governments” at Holyrood and Westminster.

Mr Sarwar spoke out on the final day of campaigning before Scots go to the polls to decide who runs Scotland’s local councils, with responsibility for vital services including bin collection, schools and social care, for the next five years.

Seats in 32 councils across the country are up for grabs.

Throughout the campaign, Labour said it had distributed more than two million pieces of party literature to homes across the country, while activists have spoken to more than 100,000 people on the doorsteps.

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With energy bills, petrol costs and food prices all rising, Mr Sarwar said: “Millions of people are struggling as family finances are devastated.

“Too many Scots are having to choose between heating and eating as the cost of living crisis bites.

“It doesn’t have to be this way. We can make different choices.

“Scottish Labour has a plan to tackle the cost of living crisis and bring our country together.”

He appealed to voters, saying: “At this election, you can choose more division and decline with the SNP and the Tories – or you can demand more action with Labour.

“These local elections are also your chance to vote for a local champion that will stand up for you, your family and your community.”

A Deltapoll commissioned by Scottish Labour shows growing dissatisfaction with the First Minister’s job among residents.

The survey of 1,001 found that a minority — just 21 percent — thought Ms Sturgeon was doing “very well” or “quite well”.

The majority — 44 percent — felt she was performing “quite” or “very” badly.

Of the remaining respondents, 29 percent said she was doing “neither well nor badly”, followed by six percent who weren’t sure.

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Fewer and fewer Scottish voters supporting their leader’s work suggests focus could be pulled from Ms Sturgeon’s independence dreams, which should see her hold a referendum in 2023.

Many of Thursday’s voters will not be voting on how well or badly they think their council is being run but rather backing the party for which they would vote in a Holyrood or Westminster election.

This means the results will provide a hint of the popularity of the parties a year on from last year’s Holyrood ballot.

The last local elections were in 2017, shortly before the Westminster election of that year in which the SNP suffered a significant reverse and the Tories won their highest share of the vote in Scotland since 1979 – trends that were reflected in the outcome of the local elections.

The Conservatives recorded their best local election performance since 1982.

In winning 25 percent of the first preference vote, the party nearly doubled the tally it secured in 2012.

The SNP did not advance at all on the 32 percent they had recorded five years earlier despite having won 50 percent of the vote in the 2015 UK general election.

Labour, meanwhile, slipped into third place with just 20 percent of the vote — down from 31 percent — while losing 133 councillors.



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