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Alex Salmond

Analysis and Comment (31)

Scotland next first minister looks set to be a coronation. Scotland next first minister looks set to be a coronation. Danny Lawson/PA

Sturgeon poised as Salmond quits and power struggle with Westminster begins

I was asked about three times this week by journalists covering the referendum whether David Cameron would have to resign in the event of a Yes vote. Nobody asked me about Alex Salmond. But when you lose…
Can the genie be put back in the bottle? Can the genie be put back in the bottle? Andrew Milligan/PA

Scotland Decides ’14: if No wins, what happens next?

Will the heady blend of Westminster love-bombing, ominous corporate warnings and a saltire flag over Downing Street be enough to persuade the Scots to come back into the fold? We have already looked at…
The Victorian view of William “Braveheart” Wallace was somewhat different. The Victorian view of William “Braveheart” Wallace was somewhat different. stocksolutions

The real reason Yes Scotland avoids Braveheart nostalgia

In 1998 Alex Salmond dismissed doubts over Scotland’s Celtic lineage as “ignorance bordering on silliness”. In 2007 he expounded a vision of the country as a “Celtic lion” economy. In 2005 a Scottish National…
Salmond/Darling: don’t get carried away with the snap polling. Salmond/Darling: don’t get carried away with the snap polling. David Cheskin

Salmond vs Darling debate: the perceived winner is not what matters

To work out who won the debates between Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling, you have to ask the audience. The trouble is that different audiences will tell you different things. If you asked the studio…
Darling appeared to struggle in the second debate. Darling appeared to struggle in the second debate. David Cheskin/PA

Scotland Decides ’14: Salmond strikes back in TV debate, but will it be a game changer?

When Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling lined up for the first TV debate on August 5, Darling came out the surprise winner for the Better Together campaign. Few would disagree that the positions were reversed…
Alex Salmond played the NHS card this week, to much derision from Better Together. Alex Salmond played the NHS card this week, to much derision from Better Together. Scottish Government

Scotland Decides ’14: is the NHS fair game?

David Cameron and other prominent unionists have accused Alex Salmond of desperation over his decision to question the future of the NHS in Scotland if it stays in the UK in recent days. The first minister’s…
Salmond’s performance was not the game changer Yes campaigners were praying for. Salmond’s performance was not the game changer Yes campaigners were praying for. Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Scottish referendum TV debate played to the partisans, not the key undecided voters

The first leaders’ debate was meant to be an opportunity for Scotland’s uncommitted – though not necessarily wholly undecided – voters to make up their minds about which way to vote. Yet whether it succeeded…
The claws were out for Salmond and Darling’s first live televised debate. The claws were out for Salmond and Darling’s first live televised debate. Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

Scotland Decides ’14: Darling draws first blood by homing in on Salmond weak spot

The leaders of the rival campaigns in Scotland’s independence referendum battle have clashed in the first televised debate ahead of the September 18 poll. So, who came out on top? David McCausland, Head…
England flag bearer Nick Matthew demonstrating how you keep politics out of the games. England flag bearer Nick Matthew demonstrating how you keep politics out of the games. Andrew Milligan/PA

Scotland Decides ’14: could the Commonwealth Games swing it for either side?

You may have thought that politics-as-usual was only put on ice during war time. But, no; politicians on both sides of Scotland’s divide have been promising in recent days that they won’t sully Glasgow’s…
Gove got whacked this week, but will the Scots be bothered? Gove got whacked this week, but will the Scots be bothered? Stefan Rousseau

Scotland Decides ’14: will the reshuffle affect the indyref?

In the hours after David Cameron unveiled the biggest cabinet reshuffle in a number of years, the Scottish first minister Alex Salmond took to the airwaves. Putting the eurosceptic Philip Hammond in charge…
By his own admission, Dave is not the most popular man in Scotland. By his own admission, Dave is not the most popular man in Scotland. Danny Lawson

Scotland Decides ’14: What to do with David Cameron?

The Better Together campaign has always had a problem. Such is Tory popularity in Scotland that the battle for the union was never going to be led by the biggest beast in British politics. Yet David Cameron…
The SNP is still struggling to woo women. The SNP is still struggling to woo women. byronv2

Scotland Decides ’14: why are women wary of independence?

Poll after poll shows Scottish women are considerably less keen on independence than men. Alex Salmond has been reaching out to women voters since the campaign kicked off two years ago. We asked our panel…
Go back to your constituencies and prepare to vote Labour! Go back to your constituencies and prepare to vote Labour! Danny Lawson/PA

Salmond courts women and Labour voters – and keeps a close eye on UKIP

Of all the party conference speeches SNP leader Alex Salmond has made over the years, Saturday’s in Aberdeen was probably the biggest. As the last conference speech before referendum day on 18 September…
Irish situation is delicate enough without talk of referendums anywhere near Stormont. Irish situation is delicate enough without talk of referendums anywhere near Stormont. Joel Riley

Scottish ballot is not stoking nationalism in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland’s oldest joke is that a man is asked, “Are you Protestant or Catholic?” to which he replies, “Actually I’m Jewish”. His questioner responds: “Yes but are you a Protestant or a Catholic…
Now, where to put my cross? Now, where to put my cross? Cx1uk

Scotland’s referendum: can we trust the polls?

Opinion polls can have a profound influence on the atmosphere of a campaign. If they suggest that one side is well ahead, the media loses interest. The politicians get less space and perhaps airtime, while…
Banter: BBC and Alex Salmond in happier times. Banter: BBC and Alex Salmond in happier times. Scottish Government

Andrew Marr gives more than a glimpse of anti-independence bias at the BBC

Called to give evidence of possible BBC bias in coverage of the Scottish referendum campaign to the Scottish Parliament’s education and culture committee on 11 March, I prompted gasps from more than one…
Shadows of things to come (or so they hope…) Shadows of things to come (or so they hope…) Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

The Queen, the pound and the EU: Salmond’s Scotland plan

Just two days after the latest polls showed the “Yes” vote for Scottish independence gaining on the pro-unionists, the Scottish government’s White Paper, Scotland’s Future: Your Guide to an Independent…
Rupert Murdoch arrives at the Leveson Inquiry in London last week. Rupert Murdoch arrives at the Leveson Inquiry in London last week. EPA/Andy Rain/Facundo Arrizablaga

The truth about Rupert Murdoch’s empire of control emerges blinking into the light

Actor Hugh Grant said it as well as anyone in an interview with ABC News a while back. All that was needed to end the UK’s decades-long culture of tolerance for News International’s phone-hacking, its…
First Minister Alex Salmond could be the man who regained Scotland’s independence. First Minister Alex Salmond could be the man who regained Scotland’s independence. AAP

Scottish independence: the referendum explained

Scotland has always been a distinct nation but since the Act of Union in 1707, it has been a nation within a larger political entity: the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The election…
Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond made a roaring success of minority government. Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond made a roaring success of minority government. AAP

Scottish Enlightenment: How Julia Gillard could learn to make minority government work

In Anglo-American democracies at least, having a “minority government” is often regarded as an undesirable state of affairs. Canada may have had considerable experience of the phenomenon, New Zealand learnt…
First Minister Alex Salmond has promised to hold a referendum on Scottish independence. First Minister Alex Salmond has promised to hold a referendum on Scottish independence. AAP

How Scottish elections could deliver an Australian republic

Australian republicans should watch the Scots. In the Scottish Parliamentary election held on 5 May, the Scottish National Party (SNP) secured an overall majority. Formerly in minority government in Scotland…