A couple of stories that I don’t want to let pass unnoted:
Research shows that just 30% of voters intend to back Labour in the constituency vote at next year’s Scottish election, down 5% on 2003. On the second vote support is 27%, down 2% since the last election.
The poll confirms Labour’s worst fears — that the Liberal Democrats and a resurgent Scottish National party would have enough seats to form a coalition and oust Jack McConnell from office. (Sunday Times)
THE debate over whether the Scottish parliament should be given more powers has taken a step forward with the creation of a cross-party parliamentary group, writes Jason Allardyce.
Jim Mather, the SNP shadow enterprise minister, has called on parliamentary colleagues across the political spectrum to join the new body, which will examine the case for more financial autonomy for Scotland. (Sunday Times)
PUBLIC spending per person in Scotland will be 22.2% higher than in England and 40.9% higher than in the east of England this year, official figures published by Chancellor Gordon Brown reveal this weekend.
The share of the state in regional economies will also reach a record high across the country, according to an analysis of the official statistics. (The Business)
Wales is the poorest region in the United Kingdom, according to the “latest” figures from EUROSTAT. It seems that Northern Ireland’s per capita GDP in 2003 was greater than Wales and the Border, Midland and Western region of the Irish Republic. (George Burns at Slugger O’Toole)