Humza Yousaf: A vote for the Greens is a 'wasted' vote

Opting for the Scottish Greens would split the pro-independence vote, the First Minister said.

Humza Yousaf: A vote for the Scottish Greens at UK general election is a ‘wasted’ vote PA Media

A vote for the Greens by Scots at the upcoming general election would be a “wasted vote”, Humza Yousaf has said.

While the SNP and the Scottish Greens are partners in the Scottish Government, both parties have now signalled they will not work together to combine votes ahead of the Westminster election later this year.

The SNP leader and Scottish First Minister told the National newspaper that votes for the Greens would split the pro-independence vote.

Yousaf told the newspaper he has “a great amount of time” for the Scottish Greens, who entered the Scottish Government in 2021 under the Bute House Agreement.

But he said: “In a Westminster election, particularly when we’re facing a challenge from Labour, the danger of voting Greens – who are not going to win a single seat in the general election in Scotland, I think they would be the first to admit that – is that would be a wasted vote.”

He added: “If you want to advance the cause of independence, if you want a party that aligns with your values – whether that’s social justice or on the climate or wellbeing economy – then the SNP is the party that you need to be voting for.”

Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie said at the weekend his party would not seek an “electoral pact” with the SNP, despite the Holyrood agreement.

It followed the party’s spring conference announcement that it plans to stand more candidates in this election than ever before.

Scottish Green Party's Ross Greer MSP at the 2023 Scottish Green Party Spring Conference at the Golden Jubilee Conference Centre in Clydebank. Picture date: Saturday March 25, 2023.PA Media

Harvie, speaking on BBC Scotland’s Sunday Show, said his party strongly believed in “political co-operation”, but added: “At an election time, it’s time to put all of those ideas, visions, on the table and allow voters to make their choices.

“So we don’t go in for electoral pacts of any kind.”

Meanwhile, responding to Yousaf’s comments, Scottish Greens MSP Ross Greer said “all other parties” were “unwilling” take the required action on climate change.

He said: “People and planet don’t have time to waste on voting for parties who are unwilling to take bold climate action.

“Every vote for the Scottish Greens sends the strongest possible message to Westminster, that Scotland demands urgent action on the climate and nature emergencies.

“The world is burning around us and sadly all other parties have proven unwilling to step up when needed to protect our common future. Only the Scottish Greens recognise that capitalism is the problem and that half-measures simply won’t do in the face of the greatest threat we all face.

“Every vote for the Scottish Greens is a vote to put people and planet ahead of corporate profits and the greed of the super-rich. We are proud to give more voters than ever the chance to send shockwaves through Westminster by voting Scottish Greens this year.”

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