General election: everything you need to know about the parties

As you might have heard already, on 12 December, we will be heading out to the polls, to take part in a general election.

Today (26 November) is the deadline to register to vote. But motivating yourself to vote can be especially difficult if you’re unsure about what the different parties are offering. We’re breaking down each party’s manifesto, to help you make up your mind, and encourage everyone to get out and vote.

In Scotland, there are many different parties that represent different politics and ideologies. The main parties, who currently have Members of Parliament (MPs), Members of Scottish Parliament (MSPs) or Members of European Parliament (MEPs) elected are the Brexit Party, Scottish Conservatives, Scottish Green Party, Scottish Labour, Scottish Liberal Democrats and the Scottish National Party.

We’re covering just a few of the main points of each party’s manifesto.

Brexit Party

  • The Brexit Party want to deliver Brexit – the UK’s departure from the European Union – as quickly as possible, with or without a deal.
  • They also with to curb immigration into the UK, with a cap of 50,000 each year.
  • The party also says it will increase police numbers, and has pledged to tackle knife and gang-related crime.
  • It has promised to keep the NHS publicly-owned and free at point of use.

Find out more here.

Scottish Conservative Party

  • The Scottish Conservative Party want to deliver Brexit on the new deadline of 31 January 2020. They are also against Scottish independence, and Boris Johnson has said he would not allow Scotland to hold another referendum while he is Prime Minister.
  • The Scottish Tories want to introduce a points-based system for immigration, prioritising those who are proficient in English, have been law-abiding citizens in the country they have previously lived in, and have an education, as well as existing qualifications.
  • They have also pledged to deliver additional funding for Scotland’s public services.

Find out more here.

Scottish Green Party

  • The Scottish Greens are opposed to Brexit and have said they will campaign to remain in the EU if there is a second referendum. The party is also pro-Scottish independence.
  • The party’s key concern is tackling the climate crisis. They want to develop a new green deal, pledging to cut carbon emissions by 80 per cent by 2030. They will also accelerate the transition to a zero carbon economy, make homes more energy efficient and stop the use of fossil fuels.
  • The Greens also support a free at point of use NHS, giving refugees and asylum seekers the immediate right to work, and making public transport free to use for all.

Find out more here.

Scottish Labour Party

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  • The Scottish Labour Party have promised a second Brexit referendum, and are campaigning to remain in the EU. The party is also against a second Scottish independence referendum.
  • The party has pledged to invest £100 billion in Scotland over a 10 years.
  • They will offer free internet to everyone, and nationalise the rail service
  • They have also promised to raise the minimum wage from £8.21 to £10

Find out more here.

Scottish Liberal Democrat Party

  • The Scottish Lib Dems are campaigning against Brexit and want to scrap Article 50 if the party is elected in Westminster. They are against Scottish independence, but individual party members are permitted to hold a pro-independence stance.
  • They want to raise £35 billion in five years to spend on the NHS and social care, which will benefit the NHS in Scotland, too.
  • The party is also dedicated to tackling the climate crisis, with a target of 80 per cent of electricity coming from renewables by 2030. They have pledged to plant over 60 million trees per year.

Find out more here.

Scottish National Party (SNP)

  • The SNP are against Brexit, after Scotland voted to remain in the EU by 62 per cent. They are also pro-Scottish independence, with one of their key pledges being to deliver a second Scottish independence referendum in 2020.
  • They want to bring an end to austerity – the process whereby government spending is cut to public services, and taxes are increased, to reduce the role of the welfare state. The UK has been going through a period of austerity since 2008, after the recession.
  • The SNP also want to introduce an NHS Protection Bill, to prevent the UK government using the national health service in trade talks with other countries.

Find out more here.

It’s not too late to register to vote: you have until 23.59 tonight, and can register here.

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