Holyrood has turned into a race of also rans, a contest for losers.

Iain Macwhirter

Both Labour and the Conservatives tried to relaunched their Scottish Parliament election campaigns yesterday. The fact that they have been described as “stalled” 100 days before polling day tells you all you need to know about the state of the Scottish opposition.

The Holyrood election is a race of the also rans, a contest of losers, in which the only story so far is the Scottish Tories apparently gaining ground on Labour in some polls. This may not be unconnected to the fact, as revealed in Labour’s internal Mattinson Report, that, to many Scottish voters, the parties are indistinguishable from each other.

This may change rapidly if the Tories go with their souls and adopt a tax-cutting programme for Holyrood. Yesterday’s McMillan Report – independent but Tory inspired – dipped a tentative toe into fiscal minimalism by proposing a 30 per cent “aspirational” rate in addition to the existing 40…

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