Yesterday’s Evening News carried a report of the recent changes in position of SNP councillors on the city council and quotes an insider as saying: “Gavin Barrie and Cathy Fullerton were seen as the last of Steve’s crowd. This signals an end of Steve Cardownie’s influence.”
Whilst I have no desire to attempt to influence the SNP Group and have not done so since stepping down as a councillor, I cannot let this “insider’s” assertion pass without comment.
Of the nine SNP councillors who were in office at the time I was leader of the group and who were re-elected last May, six hold senior positions in the current administration and the same six held senior positions when I was leader.
So if one third of the current group were also in senior positions when I was leader, it hardly suggests that the most recent moves had the political motive the “insider” would have us believe.
The stark reality is that contests for positions are more likely to be borne out of personal ambition and any attempt to portray the most recent changes in group positions as a manifestation of some political strategy is wide of the mark. Political party’s annual general meetings can either be the launch pad or the graveyard of personal ambition and it has always been so.
Group elections can be a tough business and there are no guarantees but that is the nature of the beast.