Following new powers that were granted by Westminster in 2016, which offered the Scottish Government additional rights to make changes to taxation and the running of elections, the Scottish Government are considering giving refugees and non-EU citizens the right to vote in local and regional elections, reports reveal.
The considerations are being made by Scotland in their bid to distance themselves from the rest of the UK. Following on from this decision, a public consultation was launched last month which included the phrase:
“It seems only just that everyone legally resident in Scotland should have voting rights, allowing them to influence government and parliamentary decision-making.”
This means that not only those who have been granted asylum to live in Scotland, but also people currently residing in the country under a Visa, will be able to vote in local and regional elections. Westminster elections will not be included, as these are still controlled by the Government in London.
Joe FitzPatrick, SNP politician and the Scottish Government Minister for Parliamentary Business, said:
“The Scottish Government is committed to ensuring access to democratic participation for all citizens. Scotland has led the way internationally by lowering the voting age to 16.”
“We now seek to extend the opportunity to vote to all who are legally resident in Scotland. It seems only fair that those who have the right to live here, whether from EU countries or elsewhere, have the right to vote.”
“As citizens from a very wide range of countries come to live and work in Scotland, it can be considered discriminatory to deny the right to vote to resident immigrants who are neither EU nor Commonwealth citizens.”
The above mentioned public consultation is due to end in two months’ time, on 12th March 2018.
The above considerations could spell disaster for any Scottish citizen who wants to keep their borders closed and protect their Scottish heritage. We know from looking at trends in the past that refugees, particularly those from a Muslim background, are more likely to vote for left-leaning candidates who promote open borders and forced (yet often failed) assimilation.