Scottish parliamentary election: Scottish National Party's support falls but it still remains dominant ahead of Holyrood election

James Nickerson
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Leader Of The SNP Nicola Sturgeon Gives A Speech On Child Poverty
Sturgeon's party looks set to dominate the election (Source: Getty)

The Scottish National Party has (quite surprisingly) witnessed a fall in support, one week before the Scottish parliamentary election.

But First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, nor the rest of her party, will be worrying too much, as the SNP still has a commanding lead ahead of the vote, according to the latest poll from TNS.

The proportion backing the SNP in the constituency vote has fallen to 52 per cent, a four percentage point drop in the last month, and an eight percentage point decline from a peak two months ago.

Meanwhile, although this month’s drop in SNP support for the regional vote is smaller – down two percentage points – this continues a decline first noted last month, from a peak of 55 per cent two months ago to 45 per cent in the latest poll.

Read more: Scottish parliamentary election looks bleak for Labour

Labour and the Conservatives have both benefited from small increases in support.

In the Scottish parliamentary election voters are given two votes. Scotland is divided into 73 constituencies and each constituency selects one MSP, while a regional vote is used to elect 56 additional members.

A poll released yesterday put Labour in third place behind the Tories, suggesting the party could slip into third in the election for the first time since 1910.

Read more: Most Scots want to remain part of the EU

The Labour manifesto pledges to raise the top rate of tax to 50 per cent, as well as one pence rises in rates of other bands. The party said it was necessary to guarantee the higher investment needed in education, health and job creation.

The Tory manifesto promises to campaign against two SNP policies that have proved controversial: the Named Persons Act, which aims to appoint a "named person" for every child; and cuts to college places.

Both the Conservatives and Labour have (tacitly, at least) accepted that the SNP will dominate the election, and are instead vying for second place.

The sample of 1,035 adults aged 16 and above in Scotland also indicated many Scots are still unsure on how they will vote in the EU referendum.

Some 48 per cent back Remain, while 21 per cent support Leave. With 31 per cent undecided, however, it could all be to play for.

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