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Stewart Hosie for Depute Leader of the SNP
More Powers for Scotland: The Next Challenge
1. Galvanise the Yes movement to secure significant new powers for Scotland.
Yes activists knocked on the doors of hundreds of thousands of independence supporters but the result throughout Scotland was clear and no-one can deny that. Nor, however, can anyone deny the incredible enthusiasm and energy that the Yes campaign brought to Scotland, re-energising politics in every corner of our country. I am certain if we are to ensure new powers are delivered for Scotland then the wider Yes movement must be maintained and re-mobilised, with the SNP playing a pivotal role.
2. Ensure that Westminster delivers on its promises of more powers.
It will be vital to keep the energy of the Yes movement alive as we continue to campaign for more powers. The next opportunity we have to do that is the 2015 General Election. But let me be clear – I do not believe that election should be a re-run of the referendum. Rather it is Scotland’s chance to hold Westminster to account – to hold their ‘feet to the fire’ – ensuring that they keep their promise to deliver devo-max – maximum devolution – and that means devolving everything apart from defence and foreign affairs. And let us be clear, it was that promise – of devo-max – that encouraged large numbers of Scots to vote No in the referendum.
3. Deliver a strong SNP team in Westminster at the General Election in 2015.
The best way to make sure that Westminster delivers substantial new powers for Scotland will be to return as many SNP MPs as possible at the General Election in May. While I would hope and expect that many of the incredibly talented people who emerged through the referendum campaign would stand at the next General Election, I am also certain that the SNP is the best vehicle to deliver that result for Scotland. And if we maintain the campaigning efforts we have seen over the last two years, then I am confident that we will send the largest ever number of SNP MPs to Westminster.
4. Mobilise the increased SNP membership to deliver our message to Yes and No voters alike.
The SNP must now reach out not just to those who voted Yes, but those people who voted No expecting substantial new powers for Scotland. Our burgeoning party membership has been emboldened by the referendum campaign and the energy and enthusiasm of our movement is remarkable. We share a collective vision for a better Scotland and a determination to ensure that Westminster delivers on its promises of substantial new powers for Scotland. We must also work together to deliver more MPs to Westminster next May and to secure a victory in the Scottish Parliament election in 2016.
5. Offer real leadership to deliver for Scotland
As an MP for 9 nears, former National Secretary, former National Organiser, Chair of the National Assessment Panel, and of course a party member for more than 30 years, I believe that I have real experience where it counts and that I can play a key leadership role in our campaign to ensure that Westminster delivers maximum devolved powers for Scotland.