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SNP: Welcome Margaret Lynch into party from Labour

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Craig Cockburn

Dec 26, 1998, 3:00:00 AM12/26/98
NEWS RELEASE EMBARGO: Monday 21 December 1998, 11.00 am


At a news conference in Edinburgh this morning [Monday], the Scottish
National Party were delighted to announce that long-standing Labour
Party activist Ms Margaret Lynch - who is on Labour's approved panel of
candidates for the Scottish Parliament election - is joining the SNP. Ms
Lynch said:

"Labour are making the same fatal mistake as the Tories did under
Margaret Thatcher - foisting a political agenda on Scotland devised in
London, and suited to the economic and social climate of south-east

"They are offering a pale imitation of a failed Thatcherite political
project - and are determined to exert tight control over the Scottish
Parliament from London.

"The SNP have become a home for all those Labour voters who feel that
London Labour has rejected them, and all they ever believed in.

"The SNP have a positive vision for Scotland. The SNP are in touch with
local communities, because they listen to their members. They are a
party committed to bringing the values of enterprise, compassion and
democracy into the heart of Scottish politics. And they are a party
totally committed to making the devolved Scottish Parliament work, as
the best means of Scotland moving forward to Independence."

SNP Justice & Equality Spokesperson Ms Roseanna Cunningham MP added:

"I am delighted to welcome Margaret Lynch into the SNP, where I know she
will find a ready home.

"In thinking and talking about the new Scottish democracy that we all
look forward to, Margaret has come to the conclusion that the Parliament
must be run by a party which is itself run in Scotland - as opposed to
one that takes its orders from Millbank Tower in London.

"Her decision to leave London Labour and join Scotland's Party, the SNP,
reflects the clear trend that is underway among the Scottish people as a
whole, and gives us enormous encouragement in our campaign to win the
Scottish Parliament election next May."

SNP Vice-Convener for Publicity Ms Nicola Sturgeon concluded:

"While the SNP have a growing team of highly committed activists all
over Scotland - as we saw in the North East by-election - the
demoralisation within Labour's ranks is leading to huge numbers of their
activists refusing to campaign for London Labour's policies. And in the
case of Margaret - and others in recent months - they are joining
Scotland's Party, the SNP.

"The vast majority of Labour's Scottish activists do not believe in
cutting lone parent benefits, imposing tuition fees, or pursuing a
London-based economic strategy, and will no longer defend such policies
on the doorsteps.

"In contrast to the SNP's high level of morale and activity, the
organisational shrinkage that Labour are suffering will be an extremely
important factor in deciding next year's Scottish Parliament election."

Biographical Note Margaret Lynch joined the Labour Party in 1979, aged
16, and has been an active party member for 19 years.

She is a former member of Labour's Scottish Executive, and is former
chair of Scottish Labour's Economics and Industry Committee.

Margaret is on Labour's approved list of candidates for the Scottish
Parliament election.

She is Executive Director of 'War on Want' - an international aid agency
linked to the labour and trade union movement. She is also vice-
president of 'Solidar' - a network of 32 international aid agencies,
linked to social democratic and trade union movements in Europe.

Contact: SNP Press Office, Tel: 0131 226 3661

Craig Cockburn ("coburn")
Port na Banrighinn, Alba. (Queensferry, Scotland) PGP key available.
Sgri\obh thugam 'sa Gha\idhlig ma 'se do thoil e.

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