House of Commons of the United Kingdom
The House of Commons is the lower house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Like the upper house, the House of Lords, it meets in the Palace of Westminster; the full name of the house is the Honourable the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled. Owing to shortage of space, its office accommodation extends into Portcullis House; the Commons is an elected body consisting of 650 members known as Members of Parliament. Members are elected to represent constituencies by the first-past-the-post system and hold their seats until Parliament is dissolved; the House of Commons of England started to evolve in 14th centuries. It became the House of Commons of Great Britain after the political union with Scotland in 1707, assumed the title of "House of Commons of Great Britain and Ireland" after the political union with Ireland at the start of the 19th century; the "United Kingdom" referred to was the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 1800, became the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland after the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922.
Accordingly, the House of Commons assumed its current title. Under the Parliament Act 1911, the Lords' power to reject legislation was reduced to a delaying power; the Government is responsible to the House of Commons and the Prime Minister stays in office only as long as she or he retains the confidence of a majority of the Commons. Although it does not formally elect the prime minister, the position of the parties in the House of Commons is of overriding importance. By convention, the prime minister is answerable to, must maintain the support of, the House of Commons. Thus, whenever the office of prime minister falls vacant, the Sovereign appoints the person who has the support of the House, or, most to command the support of the House—normally the leader of the largest party in the Commons, while the leader of the second-largest party becomes the Leader of the Opposition. Since 1963, by convention, the prime minister is always a member of the House of Commons, rather than the House of Lords.
The Commons may indicate its lack of support for the Government by rejecting a motion of confidence or by passing a motion of no confidence. Confidence and no confidence motions are phrased explicitly, for instance: "That this House has no confidence in Her Majesty's Government." Many other motions were until recent decades considered confidence issues though not explicitly phrased as such: in particular, important bills that were part of the Government's agenda. The annual Budget is still considered a matter of confidence; when a Government has lost the confidence of the House of Commons, the prime minister is obliged either to resign, making way for another MP who can command confidence, or to request the monarch to dissolve Parliament, thereby precipitating a general election. Parliament sits for a maximum term of five years. Subject to that limit, the prime minister could choose the timing of the dissolution of parliament, with the permission of the Monarch. However, since the Fixed-Term Parliaments Act 2011, terms are now a fixed five years, an early general election is brought about by a two-thirds majority in favour of a motion for a dissolution, or by a vote of no confidence, not followed within fourteen days by a vote of confidence.
By this second mechanism, the UK's government can change its political composition without an intervening general election. Only four of the eight last Prime Ministers have attained office as the immediate result of a general election; the latter four were Jim Callaghan, John Major, Gordon Brown and the current Prime Minister Theresa May. In such circumstances there may not have been an internal party leadership election, as the new leader may be chosen by acclaim, having no electoral rival. A prime minister will resign after party defeat at an election if unable to lead a coalition, or obtain a confidence and supply arrangement, she or he may resign after a motion of no confidence or for health reasons. In such cases, the premiership goes to, it has become the practice to write the constitution of major UK political parties to provide a set way in which to appoint a new leader. Until 1965, the Conservative Party had no fixed mechanism for this, it fell to the Queen to appoint Harold Macmillan as the new prime minister, after taking the consensus of cabinet ministers.
By convention, ministers are members of the House of House of Lords. A handful have been appointed who were outside Parliament, but in most cases they entered Parliament in a by-election or by receiving a peerage. Exceptions include Peter Mandelson, appointed Secretary of State for Business and Regulatory Reform in October 2008 before his peerage. Since 1902, all prime ministers have been members of the Commons; the new session of Parliament was delayed to await the outcome of his by-election, which happened
Ayr (Scottish Parliament constituency)
Ayr is a burgh constituency of the Scottish Parliament which elects one Member of the Scottish Parliament via the plurality electoral system. It is one of nine constituencies in the South Scotland electoral region which elects seven additional members to the Scottish Parliament via a proportional electoral system known as the Additional Members System which allows for fairer representation for the region as a whole; the other eight constituencies of the South Scotland region are Carrick and Doon Valley. The region covers the Dumfries and Galloway, East Ayrshire, Scottish Borders and South Ayrshire council areas in full and elements of the East Lothian and South Lanarkshire council areas; the Ayr constituency was created at the same time as the Scottish Parliament, in 1999, following the same boundaries as the existing Ayr constituency at Westminster. In 2005 however most UK Parliamentary constituencies in Scotland were replaced with new constituencies, with the Ayr constituency being abolished and replaced by the Ayr and Cumnock and Central Ayrshire constituencies.
This had no impact on the boundaries of the Ayr constituency in the Scottish Parliament which used the old Westminster boundaries during the 2007 election to the Scottish Parliament. The constituency covered the 1995 South Ayrshire electoral wards of: Dundonald; the remaining section of South Ayrshire was covered by the Carrick and Doon Valley constituency. Following the First Periodic Review of Scottish Parliament Boundaries in time for the 2011 Scottish Parliament election the Boundary Commission for Scotland recommended alterations to the existing Ayr constituency which were implemented and used at the 2011 and 2016 Scottish Parliamentary elections; these boundaries remain in place today and will be used at the next election to the Scottish Parliament. The review suggested that the Ayr constituency take in the electoral wards of: Troon, Ayr North, Ayr East and Ayr West, covering the towns of Ayr and Troon. All remaining wards in South Ayrshire form part of the Carrick and Doon Valley constituency.
The Ayr constituency covers a thin stretch of land situated along the north-west coast of South Ayrshire, taking in the adjoining coastal towns of Ayr and Troon. The constituency is a popular coastal resort on Scotland's west coast; the town of Ayr serves as the administrative centre of the South Ayrshire Council area and is the most populated section of the constituency. The town annually hosts the Scottish Grand National horse-racing steeplechase and the Scottish Airshow. Towards the south of the town is Robert Burns Cottage in the suburb of Alloway. In Prestwick and Troon, the exclusive Royal Troon and Prestwick Golf Clubs host the British Open Championship; the seat takes in Glasgow Prestwick International Airport. The constituency covers a diverse and muddled mix of wealthy middle class suburbs and deprived council estates, divided between suburban housing based around parts of Prestwick and the south of Ayr and social housing based around the industrial north of Ayr. Although the constituency is prosperous, it is littered with pockets of deprivation, with data derived from the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation indicating that 27% of the seat's populous reside in the 30% most deprived datazones in Scotland whilst 42% reside in the 30% most affluent datazones in Scotland.
Demographically, the constituency has a high percentage of elderly voters, Church of Scotland Protestants and home-owners, with a higher percentage of outright home-owners compared to the national average. According to census data, 29.7% of the seat's population are aged 60 and over, 42.7% of residents are Church of Scotland Protestant and 63.8% reside in owned "whole houses or bungalows", with 26.3% residing in owned outright "whole houses or bungalows". Government statistics from 2014 indicate that an above-average proportion of properties in the constituency are in council tax bands D to H, with 35% in bands D to E compared to the Scottish average of 26%, 17% in council tax bands F to H compared to the national average of 13%. At the 2011 census the unemployment rate in the constituency was registered as 4.9%, the same as the Scottish national average. The Ayr seat has held a higher level of support for the Conservative Party in comparison to elsewhere in Scotland and the United Kingdom as a whole.
The equivalent Westminster constituency of Ayr was gained by the Conservative Party at its creation in 1950. In subsequent elections the seat went on to return Conservative MP's to Parliament until the 1997 UK general election, when the boundaries of the constituency were altered in a move involving the transfer of a number of Conservative-voting suburbs towards the south of Ayr to the adjoining Carrick and Doon Valley constituency, which subsequently altered the demographics of the Ayr constituency - benefiting the Labour Party. In spite of this, at the 1997 election the Ayr seat returned one of the smallest pro-Labour swings in Great Britain at just over 5%. Prior to this the Ayr Burghs constituency (which incorporated a number of
Scottish Parliament Building
The Scottish Parliament Building is the home of the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood, within the UNESCO World Heritage Site in central Edinburgh. Construction of the building commenced in June 1999 and the Members of the Scottish Parliament held their first debate in the new building on 7 September 2004; the formal opening by Queen Elizabeth II took place on 9 October 2004. Enric Miralles, the Spanish architect who designed the building, died before its completion. From 1999 until the opening of the new building in 2004, committee rooms and the debating chamber of the Scottish Parliament were housed in the General Assembly Hall of the Church of Scotland located on The Mound in Edinburgh. Office and administrative accommodation in support of the Parliament were provided in buildings leased from the City of Edinburgh Council; the new Scottish Parliament Building brought together these different elements into one purpose-built parliamentary complex, housing 129 MSPs and more than 1,000 staff and civil servants.
From the outset, the building and its construction have been controversial. The choices of location, architect and construction company were all criticised by politicians, the media and the Scottish public. Scheduled to open in 2001, it did so in 2004, more than three years late with an estimated final cost of £414 million, many times higher than initial estimates of between £10m and £40m. A major public inquiry into the handling of the construction, chaired by the former Lord Advocate, Lord Fraser of Carmyllie, was established in 2003; the inquiry concluded in September 2004 and criticised the management of the whole project from the realisation of cost increases down to the way in which major design changes were implemented. Despite these criticisms and a mixed public reaction, the building was welcomed by architectural academics and critics; the building aimed to achieve a poetic union between the Scottish landscape, its people, its culture, the city of Edinburgh. The Parliament Building won numerous awards including the 2005 Stirling Prize and has been described by landscape architect Charles Jencks as "a tour de force of arts and crafts and quality without parallel in the last 100 years of British architecture".
Comprising an area of 1.6 ha, with a perimeter of 480 m, the Scottish Parliament Building is located 1 km east of Edinburgh city centre on the edge of the Old Town. The large site housed the headquarters of the Scottish and Newcastle brewery which were demolished to make way for the building; the boundary of the site is marked by the Canongate stretch of the Royal Mile on its northern side, Horse Wynd on its eastern side, where the public entrance to the building is, Reid's Close on its western side. Reid's Close connects the Holyrood Road on the southwestern side of the complex; the south eastern side of the complex is bounded by the Our Dynamic Earth visitor attraction which opened in July 1999, Queen's Drive which fringes the slopes of Salisbury Crags. In the immediate vicinity of the building is the Palace of Holyroodhouse, bordered by the broad expanse of Holyrood Park. To the south of the parliamentary complex are the steep slopes of Salisbury Crags and Arthur's Seat; the Holyrood and Dumbiedykes areas, to the west of the site, have been extensively redeveloped since 1998, with new retail and office developments, including Barclay House, the new offices of The Scotsman Publications Ltd.
Before 1707, the Kingdom of Scotland was a sovereign independent state which had its own legislature—the Parliament of Scotland—which met, latterly, at Parliament House on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh. The Treaty of Union, signed in 1707, created an incorporating political union between the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England; this created the Kingdom of Great Britain. The two previous Acts of Union had dissolved the previous parliaments; the Treaty of Union created the Parliament of Great Britain, housed in the Palace of Westminster in London. As a consequence, Scotland was directly governed from London for the next 292 years without a legislature or a Parliament building of its own. Pressure for a devolved legislature of some sort grew in the 1970s with the growth of the Scottish National Party, monies were invested into the conversion of the former Royal High School on Calton Hill into an official parliament building. Whilst much of this conversion was completed and the building was renamed New Parliament House it was determined that the facility was too small for its stated purpose.
Following the April 1992 election, when a weakened John Major was re-elected, a campaign group set up adjacent to the Royal High School at the foot of the access road to Calton Hill. Starting informally this became a permanently manned "vigil" to keep the concept in the public mind; this led to the Royal High School being the "popular" choice of site in the public mindset. A referendum of the Scottish electorate, held on 11 September 1997, approved the establishment of a directly elected Scottish Parliament to legislate on most domestic affairs. Following this, the Scottish Office, led by the Secretary of State for Scotland, Donald Dewar, decided that a new purpose-built facility would be constructed in Edinburgh, to house the Scottish Parliament. Three sites in and around Edinburgh were considered as possible locations for the building, including St Andrew's House/New Parliament House St Andrews House being the home of the Scottish Office—later th
The Scottish Parliament is the devolved unicameral legislature of Scotland. Located in the Holyrood area of the capital city, Edinburgh, it is referred to by the metonym Holyrood; the Parliament is a democratically elected body comprising 129 members known as Members of the Scottish Parliament, elected for four-year terms under the additional member system: 73 MSPs represent individual geographical constituencies elected by the plurality system, while a further 56 are returned from eight additional member regions, each electing seven MSPs. The most recent general election to the Parliament was held on 5 May 2016, with the Scottish National Party winning a plurality; the original Parliament of Scotland was the national legislature of the independent Kingdom of Scotland, existed from the early 13th century until the Kingdom of Scotland merged with the Kingdom of England under the Acts of Union 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain. As a consequence, both the Parliament of Scotland and the Parliament of England ceased to exist, the Parliament of Great Britain, which sat at Westminster in London was formed.
Following a referendum in 1997, in which the Scottish electorate voted for devolution, the powers of the devolved legislature were specified by the Scotland Act 1998. The Act delineates the legislative competence of the Parliament – the areas in which it can make laws – by explicitly specifying powers that are "reserved" to the Parliament of the United Kingdom; the Scottish Parliament has the power to legislate in all areas that are not explicitly reserved to Westminster. The British Parliament retains the ability to amend the terms of reference of the Scottish Parliament, can extend or reduce the areas in which it can make laws; the first meeting of the new Parliament took place on 12 May 1999. The competence of the Scottish Parliament has been amended numerous times since most notably by the Scotland Act 2012 and Scotland Act 2016, with some of the most significant changes being the expansion of the Parliament's powers over taxation and welfare. Before the Treaty of Union 1707 united the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England into a new state called "Great Britain", Scotland had an independent parliament known as the Parliament of Scotland.
Initial Scottish proposals in the negotiation over the Union suggested a devolved Parliament be retained in Scotland, but this was not accepted by the English negotiators. For the next three hundred years, Scotland was directly governed by the Parliament of Great Britain and the subsequent Parliament of the United Kingdom, both seated at Westminster, the lack of a Parliament of Scotland remained an important element in Scottish national identity. Suggestions for a'devolved' Parliament were made before 1914, but were shelved due to the outbreak of the First World War. A sharp rise in nationalism in Scotland during the late 1960s fuelled demands for some form of home rule or complete independence, in 1969 prompted the incumbent Labour government of Harold Wilson to set up the Kilbrandon Commission to consider the British constitution. One of the principal objectives of the commission was to examine ways of enabling more self-government for Scotland, within the unitary state of the United Kingdom.
Kilbrandon published his report in 1973 recommending the establishment of a directly elected Scottish Assembly to legislate for the majority of domestic Scottish affairs. During this time, the discovery of oil in the North Sea and the following "It's Scotland's oil" campaign of the Scottish National Party resulted in rising support for Scottish independence, as well as the SNP; the party argued that the revenues from the oil were not benefitting Scotland as much as they should. The combined effect of these events led to Prime Minister Wilson committing his government to some form of devolved legislature in 1974. However, it was not until 1978 that final legislative proposals for a Scottish Assembly were passed by the United Kingdom Parliament. Under the terms of the Scotland Act 1978, an elected assembly would be set up in Edinburgh provided that a referendum be held on 1 March 1979, with at least 40% of the total electorate voting in favour of the proposal; the 1979 Scottish devolution referendum failed: although the vote was 51.6% in favour of a Scottish Assembly, with a turnout of 63.6%, the majority represented only 32.9% of the eligible voting population.
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, demand for a Scottish Parliament grew, in part because the government of the United Kingdom was controlled by the Conservative Party, while Scotland itself elected few Conservative MPs. In the aftermath of the 1979 referendum defeat, the Campaign for a Scottish Assembly was initiated as a pressure group, leading to the 1989 Scottish Constitutional Convention with various organisations such as Scottish churches, political parties and representatives of industry taking part. Publishing its blueprint for devolution in 1995, the Convention provided much of the basis for the structure of the Parliament. Devolution continued to be part of the platform of the Labour Party which, in May 1997, took power under Tony Blair. In September 1997, the Scottish devolution referendum was put to the Scottish electorate and secured a majority in favour of the establishment of a new devolved Scottish Parliament, with tax-varying powers, in Edinburgh. An election was held on 6 May 1999, on 1 July of that year power was transferred from Westminster to the new Parliament.
Since September 2004, the official home of the Scottish Parliament has been a new Scottish Parliament Building, in the Holyrood area of Edinburgh. The Scottish Parliament building was designed by Spanish architect Enric Miralles in partnership with local Ed
Aileen Elizabeth Campbell is a Scottish Scottish National Party politician serving as Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government since 26 June 2018 and Member of the Scottish Parliament for Clydesdale. She was Minister for Local Government and Planning May 2011−December 2011 Minister for Children and Young People December 2011−May 2016 and Minister for Public Health and Sport from May 2016 to June 2018. Campbell was first elected to the Scottish Parliament on 3 May 2007 as a list member for the South of Scotland region. At 26 years and 351 days on her election, she was the youngest MSP elected to serve in Parliament in the 2007–2011 session, followed by her SNP colleague Jamie Hepburn in second place. In December 2014 Campbell became the first person to take maternity leave while serving as a Minister of the Scottish Government. Campbell was born on 18 May 1980 in Scotland, she grew up on her parents' tenant farm in Perthshire and was educated at Collace Primary School and Perth Academy.
She studied Politics and History at the University of Glasgow. From 2005 − 06 Campbell was national convener of the Young Scots for Independence. Since graduating, she has worked as editor of construction magazine Keystone and was editorial assistant on a short-lived pro-independence newspaper, the Scottish Standard. Before her election to Parliament Campbell worked for Nicola Sturgeon and as a researcher for Shona Robison and Stewart Hosie. Aileen married Graham Fraser White in Collace Kirk, Perthshire, on 15 August 2009. At the 2007 Scottish Parliament election she was the SNP candidate for the Clydesdale constituency where she finished second but was subsequently elected as an addition a member for the South of Scotland region due to Campbell being fifth on the SNP's regional list. Campbell suffered a minor injury on 23 January 2008, receiving medical treatment at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary before returning to the parliament for a vote; the vote was won by 64 votes to 62. In early 2009 Campbell launched the "Play it again" scheme with the Scottish Arts Council and others to encourage people across Scotland to donate their unwanted and unloved musical instruments to be passed on to children across the country to give them the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of music.
Campbell was nominated for Real Radio's "Best New Scottish Politician 2009 Award". Campbell was elected as MSP for Clydesdale on 5 May 2011 after receiving an 8.9% swing from Labour, giving her a majority of 4,216. She served as Minister for Local Government and Planning from 25 May 2011 until 6 December 2011; when she was moved to the position of Minister for Children and Young People. On 18 December 2014, Campbell began maternity leave and Fiona McLeod acted as Minister for Children and Young People until Campbell returned on 1 September 2015; this was the first time. In the 2016 election she was re-elected as the MSP for Clydesdale with an increased majority. On 18 May 2016 she was moved to the post of Minister for Public Sport in a reshuffle. Government of the 3rd Scottish Parliament Government of the 4th Scottish Parliament Biography pages on Scottish Parliament website Personal website Daily Record Coverage of Play it Again Scotsman Coverage of Play it Again
2003 Scottish Parliament election
The Scottish Parliament election, 2003, was the second election of members to the Scottish Parliament. It was held on 1 May 2003 and it brought no change in terms of control of the Scottish Executive. Jack McConnell, the Labour Party Member of the Scottish Parliament, remained in office as First Minister and the Executive continued as a Labour and Liberal Democrat coalition; as of 2019, it remains the last general election victory for the Scottish Labour Party. The results showed rises in support for smaller parties, including the Scottish Green Party and the Scottish Socialist Party and declines in support for the Labour Party and the Scottish National Party; the Conservative and Unionist Party and the Scottish Liberal Democrats each polled exactly the same percentage of the vote as they had in the 1999 election, with each holding the same number of seats as before. Three independent MSPs were elected: Dennis Canavan, Margo MacDonald and Jean Turner. John Swinburne, leader of the Scottish Senior Citizens Unity Party, was elected.
This led to talk of a "rainbow" Parliament, but the arithmetic meant that the coalition of Labour and Scottish Liberal Democrats could continue in office, which they did until the 2007 election. The decline in support for the SNP was viewed by some as a rejection of the case for Scottish independence. Others argued against this, pointing out that the number of MSPs in favour of independence rose because most of the minor parties such as the SSP share this position with the SNP. At the dissolution of Parliament on 31 March 2003, ten MSPs were not seeking re-election; the parliament was dissolved on 31 March 2003 and the campaign began thereafter. Labour – Jack McConnell SNP – John Swinney Conservative – David McLetchie Liberal Democrat – Jim Wallace Greens – Robin Harper & Eleanor Scott SSP – Tommy Sheridan Brian Fitzpatrick and Bearsden Rhoda Grant and Islands Iain Gray, Edinburgh Pentlands Angus MacKay, Edinburgh South Richard Simpson, Mid Scotland and Fife Elaine Thomson, Aberdeen North Kenneth Gibson, Glasgow Irene McGugan, North East Scotland Fiona McLeod, West of Scotland Gil Paterson, Central Scotland Lloyd Quinan, West of Scotland Michael Russell, South of Scotland Andrew Wilson, Central Scotland Keith Harding, Mid Scotland and Fife Lyndsay McIntosh, Central Scotland Notes: 1.
The Scottish Greens did not stand in any constituencies, instead concentrating their resources on winning the largest possible share of the "second" vote for'list' seats. 2. Three independents were elected: Margo MacDonald, Dennis Canavan and Jean Turner. 4. Overall turnout was 49.4%, down on the 1999 election. As part of the coalition deal between Labour and the Scottish Liberal Democrats, Labour allowed proportional representation to be used in Scottish local government elections; this system was first used in 2007. The Lib Dems declared a total of £130,358 was spent on the campaign, SSP spent £74,361 the Greens spent £65,852 and the Scottish Senior Citizens' Unity Party spent 3,558; the Scottish People's Alliance spent £188,889 and UKIP spent £39,504. Members of the Scottish Parliament, 2003-2007 Welsh Assembly election, 2003 and United Kingdom local elections, 2003 the same day British National Party- Freedom Pro-Life Alliance Scottish Liberal Democrats- Make the difference Scottish National Party- Release our potential Scottish Socialist Party – another Scotland is possible BBC: Vote Scotland 2003 Scottish Election Results 1997 – present
2007 Scottish Parliament election
The 2007 Scottish Parliament election was held on Thursday 3 May 2007 to elect members to the Scottish Parliament. It was the third general election to the devolved Scottish Parliament since it was created in 1999. Local elections in Scotland fell on the same day; the Scottish National Party emerged as the largest party with 47 seats followed by the incumbent Scottish Labour Party with 46 seats. The Scottish Conservatives won 17 seats, the Scottish Liberal Democrats 16 seats, the Scottish Green Party 2 seats and one Independent was elected; the SNP approached the Lib Dems for a coalition government, but the Lib Dems turned them down. The Greens agreed to provide the numbers to vote in an SNP minority government, with SNP leader Alex Salmond as First Minister; the Scottish Socialist Party and the Scottish Senior Citizens Unity Party, which won seats in the 2003 election, lost all of their seats. Former MSP Tommy Sheridan's new party, Solidarity failed to win any seats. Campbell Martin and Dr Jean Turner both lost their seats, Dennis Canavan and Brian Monteith retired.
The main issues during the campaign trail were healthcare, council tax reform, the Union, the Iraq War and more powers for the Scottish Parliament. Some parties proposed raise the school leaving age from 16 to 18 and raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco products from 16 to 18. Jack McConnell, as First Minister, entered the election defending a small overall majority of five seats via a coalition of Labour and the Liberal Democrats; the Lab-LD social liberal coalition had been in power, with three different First Ministers, since the first Scottish Parliament election in 1999. Opinion polls suggested its majority could be lost in 2007, due to falling support for the Labour Party and rising support for other parties, in particular the Scottish National Party; the polls suggested that no single party was to acquire an overall majority, nor was there an obvious alternative coalition ready to form a new Executive. A TNS Poll in November 2006 gave Labour an 8% lead over the SNP, second behind Labour in terms of numbers of Members of the Scottish Parliament.
As the election approached the SNP gained support while Labour's support declined. Based on pre-election projections, there could have been some possibility of an SNP–Liberal Democrat coalition, which might have extended to include the Scottish Green Party; the other parties represented in the Parliament before the election were the Scottish Conservative Party, the Scottish Socialist Party and the Scottish Senior Citizens Unity Party. Other parties that campaigned for seats in Holyrood included the United Kingdom Independence Party, the British National Party, the Scottish Unionist Party, the Scottish Socialist Labour Party, the Christian Peoples Alliance, the Scottish Christian Party and the Scotland Against Crooked Lawyers Party. Susan Deacon, Edinburgh East and Musselburgh John Home Robertson, East Lothian Janis Hughes, Glasgow Rutherglen Kate Maclean, Dundee West Maureen Macmillan and Islands list Bruce McFee, West of Scotland list George Reid, Ochil Phil Gallie, South of Scotland list James Douglas-Hamilton, Lothians list Donald Gorrie, Central Scotland list Jim Wallace, Orkney Frances Curran, West of Scotland list Dennis Canavan, Falkirk West Brian Monteith, Mid Scotland and Fife list Gordon Jackson, Glasgow Govan Sylvia Jackson, Stirling Margaret Jamieson and Loudoun Maureen Macmillan and Islands Christine May, Fife Central Alasdair Morrison, Western Isles Bristow Muldoon, Livingston Allan Wilson, Cunninghame North Andrew Arbuckle, Mid Scotland and Fife Nora Radcliffe, Gordon Euan Robson and Berwickshire Dave Petrie and Islands Murray Tosh, West of Scotland Shiona Baird, North East Scotland Chris Ballance, South of Scotland Mark Ballard, Lothians Mark Ruskell, Mid Scotland and Fife Eleanor Scott and Islands Rosemary Byrne, South of Scotland Colin Fox, Lothians Rosie Kane, Glasgow Carolyn Leckie, Central Scotland Tommy Sheridan, Glasgow John Swinburne, Central Scotland Campbell Martin, West of Scotland - Former SNP MSP Jean Turner and Bearsden Turnout in the election was 51.7% in the constituency vote and 52.4% in the regional vote up from 2003 where the turnout was 49.4% in both the constituency and regional vote Notes: Independents contested 17 seats and three regions.
Scottish Greens contested 1 seat, Scottish Socialist Party contested 1 seat, Scottish Christian Party, Scottish Voice etc. contested a small number of seats. A number of local issue parties stood in single constituencies; the Nine Per Cent Growth Party stood candidates on the regional lists, had a candidate for the local council elections of the same year. Standing in the Glasgow Regional List the party finished last of 23 candidates, receiving only 80 votes, a record low; some counts in the Western Isles were delayed because the chartered helicopter sent to pick up the ballot boxes was delayed by bad weather. The boxes were instead transferred by road to be counted in Stornoway; the votes were announced around 12.00 on Friday 4 May. A man smashed ballot boxes with a golf club at a polling station at Carrick Knowe in Corstorphine in Edinburgh. About 100 ballots were damaged; the man was arrested on the scene. The number of'invalid' ballot papers has increased from previous elections, the BBC reported that 142,000 were rejected.
The Herald reported that this included both constituency and regional