Edinburgh’s SNP-Labour mutual appreciation society shows Keir Starmer is wrong about Tories – John McLellan

Whoever writes Sir Keir Starmer’s speeches can’t have spent much time in Edinburgh recently, and if Anas Sarwar’s office in Holyrood saw an advance draft of his address to last weekend’s Scottish Labour conference, they must have been asleep for ten years.

Thursday, 10th March 2022, 12:30 pm
Labour group leader Cammy Day and SNP group leader Adam McVey (Picture: Ian Georgeson)
Labour group leader Cammy Day and SNP group leader Adam McVey (Picture: Ian Georgeson)

The SNP and Conservatives are, according to Sir Keir, “joined at the hip” when anyone in Edinburgh who has picked up a Council Tax bill in the past decade knows that the parties in lockstep are Labour and the SNP.

Their coalition has run Edinburgh Council since 2012 and there has been no pair so closely fused than Edinburgh Council’s very own Chang and Eng, SNP leader Adam McVey and his ever-supportive Labour side-kick Cammy Day, both faithfully backing each other up against the common Conservative enemy since 2017.

No press release emerges from the City Council without the usual Chuckle Brothers script about how wonderful they are, while every year there is only a passing reference to the SNP’s miserable settlement for local government before Labour votes through the SNP group’s priorities.

Every decision the SNP takes in Edinburgh is validated by Labour, even leading to continued local Labour backing for a new workplace parking tax, despite being rejected by the Scottish party.

And they are such best buddies that any councillor who challenges their cosy protection of vested interests could find themselves insulted, demoted, suspended and ostracised.

Conservatives joined at the hip with the SNP? It will take more than a surgeon to separate Edinburgh’s SNP-Labour mutual appreciation society from their special responsibility payments.

John McLellan is a Conservative councillor for Craigentinny/Duddingston

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