It’s been a while since I’ve have a chance to put virtual pen to paper — the election campaign certainly put paid to any spare time in recent months.

A lot of political water has indeed passed under the bridge since my last article— the AFI proved dead on arrival, and the carefully laid plans of the ISP were brusquely laid to rest, as they had the rug discourteously swept right from under them, as Alex Salmond, the bloggers’ Messiah himself, returned to the political stage as head of a venture known as Alba, the new vehicle for all the hopes of the frustrated and malcontented fringes of the indy movement.

What looked like unassailable poll leads for the SNP last autumn (and indeed for Yes) has inevitably narrowed considerably, as it always does in the year before a poll, and an SNP majority government hangs in the balance. No, scratch that — it rests in your hands.

You see, it’s up to you to use your vote wisely and ensure there’s a strong SNP majority government that will lead the way on independence, or whether you continue to be seduced by the snake oil rhetoric of “supermajorities”, now with the Salmond imprint, rather than the ISP’s.

I, and many others, have explained the dangers of falling for this line, and have used the arithmetic facts to expose the nonsense — and lies — of those who would have you believe that voting for a fringe party on a few percent of the vote can magically challenge unionist seats alone without endangering the SNP, and usher in changes that an SNP majority government can’t, even if it won one or two seats.

We warned you that the nature of the list meant that all parties are competing against each other, that it’s not a case of voting “indy list party” to “bin unionist seat warmers”, as the serially hard of thinking indy ‘bloggers’ would have you believe.

But still you believe, still you can’t see the consequences of what will happen, if you cling to those myths, and cast your vote for Alba, instead of the SNP.

That’s why, on polling day 2021, I’d like to talk to you about the #AlbaEffect.

So, let’s have a look at the most recent polls, to see exactly what an Alba vote might get you.

Let’s see what the seat projections would be from these polls — and if Yessers stayed with the SNP instead of gambling with Alba.

YouGov — May 4th

Let’s start our discussions by imagining that Alba didn’t exist, and those who indicated support for Alba voted SNP instead (so we can gauge the effect of an Alba vote).

This would be the hypothetical list result sans Alba:

Now lets look at projections with Alba receiving the 3% indicated in the YouGov poll:

No supermajority, but the SNP’s Highland and Islands list seat handed straight to the Tories. Job well done, Alba.

Savanta ComRes — May 4th

Let’s now look at the last Savanta ComRes poll. Again, with would be the projected result if Alba supporters voted SNP in the list:

A whopping six SNP list seats.

No let’s see the projection with the 2.3% support for Alba indicated in the poll:

Three potential SNP list seats handed to unionists — one to Labour in Lothian and two to the Tories in Mid Scotland and Fife, and in North East Scotland.

Ipsos MORI — May 3rd

Now to Ipsos MORI’s last poll , released a couple of days ago.

Again, the result with all the Alba votes going to the SNP on the list:

One list seat, but better than none

Now let Alba have the 2.26% indicated in the poll and stand back for the supermajority:

As before, a potential SNP list seat in the Highlands and Islands offered on a platter to the Tories.

Panelbase — April 30th

With Alba votes going to the SNP — two SNP list seats in H&I and South Scotland:

With the 4.35% support for Alba in the poll:

Again, the Tories take the SNP’s Highlands and Islands seat.

BMG — April 30

One final one — I think you get the drift by now — from BMG at the end of April. The hypothetical result with no Alba:

One list seat in H&I. No let Alba have its 4.47% as in the poll:

That SNP seat in the Highlands and Islands gone again. No supermajority in sight, and one more unionist at Holyrood.

Use Your Vote Wisely — Don’t Gamble Scotland’s Future

Thursday, 6th May is the most important election in Scotland’s history.

You have the option to vote to bring about a strong SNP majority government, and by doing so thus to demonstrate to Johnson’s Tories (and all the other unionist parties) that Scotland has voted unequivocably for #indyref2.

You also have the option to cling to false hopes, to imagine that voting for a party on 2–5% in the polls will bring about a fantasy supermajority — when the harsh reality is that not only will Alba be unlikely to win any seats at all, but your vote for them will hand potential SNP seats — independence seats — straight over to the Tories.

It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee, time to look at the cold hard facts, time to think with your head, and not believe in what just ain’t so.

If you truly want to advance the cause of independence, it’s time to ignore the siren voices on the fringes of the indy social media bubble, and to look at the stark reality of the polls.

Only #BothVotesSNP will help get us the government that will get us to the “promised land” of independence.

When the counts are finished, and the results are in and scrutinised, we will know exactly whether votes for Alba cost the SNP seats and gave “unionist seat warmers” another five years at Holyrood.

You know what to do, you know that Johnson will determine Scotland’s appetite for independence on the result for the SNP alone. Don’t give him an excuse.

You know it has to be SNP on the list.