Which party will get your second vote?

With only a week to go until polling day for the Scottish Parliament elections, the highest-profile campaign launch so far was held this week in Melrose, with former First Minister Alex Salmond supporting his list candidates for the South of Scotland.

Tuesday, 27th April 2021, 1:48 pm
Former First Minister Alex Salmond with Alba candidates Cynthia Guthrie, Corri Wilson and Suzanne Blackley at Melrose Abbey.

Mr Salmond, whose fall-out with the Scottish National Party was high on the news agenda earlier this year, is still asking pro-independence voters to choose their SNP candidate, but also to put their cross for his Alba party in the regional list vote.

While many SNP voters are concerned this would split the vote between the two nationalist parties, Mr Salmond believes this is the best way to concoct a “super-majority” for independence at Holyrood.

On Monday, he turned up to the party’s campaign launch in Melrose with candidates Cynthia Guthrie, Corri Wilson and Suzanne Blackley.

He said: “It should not split the vote because the SNP should win the constituencies. And what the SNP folk should be doing is what I am doing, casting their constituency vote for the SNP and their list vote for Alba.

Mr Salmond told us that the party is pledging for the extension of the Borders Railway to Carlisle.

He said: “That was always my intention when I sanctioned the return of the railway to the Borders and I am amazed that no more progress has been made over the last seven years. I think we need a firm commitment to get the railway through Hawick and on to Carlisle.”

He also said the roads through the Borders also needed to be looked at, having travelled to Melrose on the A68.

Voters in the South of Scotland can make their second choice from the Abolish the Scottish Parliament Party; the fore-mentioned Alba party; George Galloway's All For Unity party; the Freedom Alliance party, the Independent Green Voice party; the Michelle Ballantyne-led Reform UK party; Scotia Future; Scottish Conservatives; the Scottish Family Party; Scottish Greens; Scottish Labour; Scottish Liberal Democrats; Scottish Libertarian Party; Scottish National Party; UKIP and the Vanguard Party.

See pages 33 and 34 for an insight into the candidates in the Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale, and Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire constituencies.