Readers' letters: Rob Munn pays price for alphabet effect

Your political editor Ian Swanson intimates that there might be an alphabet effect in the council election voting procedure in relation to the rare defeat of SNP finance convener Cllr Rob Munn in his Leith Walk ward (Finance convener loses out to the 'alphabet effect', News, May 7).

There is undoubtedly no question about this whatsoever in my mind.

Most people are just expecting one candidate from each party and are mainly voting along party lines. They will obviously pick the first name attached to the party that they see.

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This is not rocket science. I did it in St Andrews when I voted, to the detriment of the other Lib Dem candidate Jane Anne Liston.

The Scottish Government should really use their brains here, God willing. If you know what I mean.

Keith McLaren, Edinburgh.

Electoral system needs explaining

Am I the only one who is both confused and puzzled about the electoral system to elect ward councillors to local councils in Scotland?

Some of the ‘phases’ deployed to elect a third or fourth councillor go into eternity, with nine or ten counts!

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I voted for two candidates in my Prestonfield/South Side ward - for Labour, but I also voted for Cameron Rose, the Conservative, as he was a good, effective and transparent representative of our community for many years.

Unfortunately he was unsuccessful, as the dirty bath water of Boris Johnson and Douglas Ross choked the Tory vote.I do try to put party aside and elect the man or woman who will best serve the community and Edinburgh - we desperately need such folk.

Keith Smith, Edinburgh.

Johnson tells lies, Starmer did not

Jonathan Powell, former chief of staff in Downing Street, responds to the Beergate saga by advising Labour leaders to simply say: 'Boris tells lies, Starmer did not.'

Here in just a few words is the problem of 21st century Labour - they believe in keeping things simple. The issue is profound not simple. By treating Beergate as equivalent to Partygate the Tories concerned make a mockery of democracy.

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The real point is that Boris Johnson persistently lied to Parliament and has accepted lying to Parliament from several of his ministers.

His economical use of the truth hasn't just been on small matters either, and it accounts for the way the more decent Tories spilt from him some time ago.

As foreign minister in the May government Johnson wanted to have the Irish border issue finessed. The puzzle be had to solve was 'when is a Brexit-created border not a border?' The answer he came up with was 'when it's an oven-ready protocol'.

All over the world right wing government's have been undermining democracy by making lies palatable. The best example of that is Putin's Russia.

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But those who undermine democracy with impunity may well (like Putin) end up being prisoners in the small world they have successfully created.

Andrew Vass, Edinburgh.

All for one in Europe

It’s remarkable that despite being in government for 15 years the SNP has secured its best ever Scottish council election result and remains in first place.

The results in Wales and N Ireland show radical constitutional changes are required.

Boris Johnson’s Brexit disaster means the four independent nations of the British Isles should work together within Europe .

Grant Frazer, Newtonmore.

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