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The Modern SNPFrom Protest to Power$
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Gerry Hassan

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780748639908

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748639908.001.0001

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The SNP and the Scottish Parliament: The Start of a New Sang?

The SNP and the Scottish Parliament: The Start of a New Sang?

(p.79) Chapter 7 The SNP and the Scottish Parliament: The Start of a New Sang?
The Modern SNP

Colin Mackay

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter explores how Holyrood has changed the Scottish National Party (SNP), and addresses the party's Scottish Parliamentary performance throughout devolution's first decade. The challenges facing the SNP in power and the Scottish government's drive towards an independence referendum are investigated. Alex Salmond had taken the SNP to a new position in Scottish politics, but his failure to win in 1999 hurt and left him wondering what it would take to win. John Swinney's leadership was always overshadowed by Salmond. He also suffered a string of poor parliamentary performances. Despite his problems, Swinney had changed his party. Nicola Sturgeon was the most consistent parliamentary performer since the start of devolution. The democratisation of the SNP under Swinney's leadership has paved the way for the authority Salmond enjoys within his party today, and Sturgeon has emerged as his natural successor.

Keywords:   Scottish National Party, Holyrood, parliamentary perfomance, devolution, Scottish government, Alex Salmond, John Swinney, Nicola Sturgeon, democratisation, independence

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