Leaders make pitch to voters on final day of council election campaign

Voters will head to the ballot box in the local elections on Thursday, May 5.

Political party leaders make pitch to voters on final day of Scottish council election campaign STV News

People across Scotland will head to the ballot box on Thursday to cast their vote in the council elections.

It will determine who will be given the responsibility to run local authorities and to make decisions on local services.

The leaders of the political parties have been out and about on the campaign trail hoping to win your vote.

On the final day of campaigning ahead of the polls opening at 7am on May 5, they are making their pitch to voters.

SNP: ‘Our priority will be supporting families’

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon: “The Tories have run out of excuses for their negligent inaction on their self-made cost of living crisis that is hammering families across Scotland.

“Boris Johnson’s utterly callous attitude to those who need help was once again exposed in TV interviews yesterday. The only thing that will make the Tories sit up and take notice is when they think their own jobs are on the line – and that’s why this election is so important.

“While all this is going on, the Tories are neglecting the spiralling cost of living crisis – while the SNP are focussed at all levels of government to support households through tough times.

“Every SNP councillor elected this week will stand firm against the Tories, ready to lock them out of power. 

“Our priority will be supporting families through the cost of living crisis – not just in words but in action – working tirelessly for local communities and local services.

“Every SNP vote this Thursday will have that impact. Together we can put Boris Johnson under real pressure to act now to help families out.”

Scottish Conservatives: ‘We’ll lock the SNP out of power’

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross: “During this campaign, I’ve visited every mainland council area to listen to people’s local priorities and hear what their community needs, from the people who live there and know best. 

“This election is about improving local services, restoring local schools, cleaning up local streets, fixing local roads and investing in communities. 

“But the SNP will always be too distracted by their nationalist interests to focus on what your local community needs.  

“If pro-UK voters unite, just like last year, we can beat the SNP and deliver on those local priorities. 

“We can start Scotland’s fightback against the SNP and put your local community first. 

“Vote Scottish Conservative and together we’ll lock the SNP out of power.” 

Scottish Labour: ‘Demand more action with Labour’

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar: “The people of Scotland are being failed by two out-of-touch governments in their time of need.

“Your energy bills are up, petrol prices are up and the weekly shop is more expensive than ever. Millions of people are struggling as family finances are devastated.

“Too many Scots are having to choose between heating and eating as the cost of living crisis bites.

“It doesn’t have to be this way. We can make different choices. Scottish Labour has a plan to tackle the cost of living crisis and bring our country together.

“Our detailed and costed plans could put over £1000 back in your pocket – it includes a windfall tax on energy giants, a rebate on water charges and halving rail fares.

“At this election you can choose more division and decline with the SNP and the Tories – or you can demand more action with Labour.

“These local elections are also your chance to vote for a local champion that will stand up for you, your family and your community.”

Scottish Greens: ‘This election is about action in our communities’

Scottish Greens co-leader Lorna Slater: “This election is about action in our communities.

“Which is why we need more Green councillors all over Scotland, pushing local authorities to cut carbon emissions, boost public transport and build communities where everyone can afford to live, learn and work.

“Even one or two Green councillors could be in a position to hold the balance of power, and will be crucial in delivering the things we are securing in government, like record investment in nature restoration, recycling and active travel, and the biggest teacher recruitment drive in 15 years.

“Every vote counts, but it is your number one vote that is the most important and that will make by far the biggest difference.

“Giving the Scottish Greens your first preference is the only way to guarantee a new direction for your council.”

Scottish Liberal Democrats: ‘You will get a local champion’

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton: “There is a choice ahead of voters.

“If you vote for the SNP you will get representatives that will make excuses for cuts to local services and care more about independence than they do tackling the cost of living crisis. 

“If you vote for the Conservatives you will get someone who was happy to stand under the banner of a Prime Minister who was partying while women gave birth alone and people said goodbye to their loved ones by video call. 

“But if you vote for Scottish Liberal Democrats you will get a local champion; someone who will sweat the small stuff like potholes and bin collections while fighting for you on the big stuff.

“Our party wants to insulate every home in Scotland to bring down bills and tackle the climate emergency, get new staff into GP surgeries and reform business rates to reinvigorate high streets. 

“From travelling around Scotland I know that more and more people who have voted Conservative or SNP in the past are curious about what a hardworking Liberal Democrat can do for them. I would urge them to give us a try.” 

Alba Party: ‘Alba are the independence priority party’

Alba Party leader Alex Salmond: “Alba are the independence priority party.

“Our candidates are the ones making the case for why Scotland urgently needs independence to mobilise the resources of Scotland to meet sky high energy prices.

“We’ve outlined practical measures to tackle the cost of living crisis, things that should be done, things that can be done and things that must be done.

“From increasing the Scottish Child Payment to £40 a week, to £500 payments targeted at every household who gets council tax reduction, who are the hardest pressed people in the country.

“Also free universal access to sporting facilities for under 18s and doubling the winter fuel payment to provide a lifeline to pensioners and those with severe disabilities this coming winter. 

“If Westminster can find money overnight for financing wars, and councils ring fence billions in reserves for ‘rainy days’ then we can find the resources required in the midst of this cost of living crisis.

“I have news for the unionist parties, it is raining right now, the water is pouring in and if we don’t act now then children, pensioners and families across Scotland will be plunged ever deeper into fuel poverty in our land of energy plenty.”

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