Photographer: Sally Anscombe

Why Millionaires and Working Scots Now Back the SNP

The Scottish nationalists are on the verge of a huge victory in the U.K. election. Here's why.

When the U.K. goes to the polls on Thursday, Scotland's 59 seats at Westminster are expected to play a vital role in shaping the future of the next government.

Polls show that Labour's traditional dominance in Scotland is likely to be wiped out by the Scottish National Party, which has seen a surge in support since the failed "Yes" campaign in the 2014 independence referendum. 

In the run-up to polling day, Bloomberg's video team has been based in Scotland, attempting to take pulse of an electorate poised to change the political face of the United Kingdom.

‘I Haven’t Left Labour - Labour’s Left Me’

One Day, Three Cities: Scotland's Political Pulse

Membership of the SNP has skyrocketed since the 2014 referendum, and the party now has more than 100,000 members.

To get a sense of the dynamics behind the party’s new-found dominance – and its impact on the Labour Party – we took a road trip across Scotland from the capital Edinburgh, to Dundee and on to the cultural hub of Glasgow.

Our reporters found Scots disillusioned with a party seen as arrogant and out-of-touch, as well as an enthusiasm for the SNP itself.

Millionaire Grocer Chooses the SNP

The Millionaire Grocer Backing the SNP

With pledges to increase the minimum wage and raise taxes on the wealthy, lower-income voters are a natural target for the SNP. But the party has also managed to attract high-profile members of Scotland’s business community.

Mohammed Ramzan is a case in point. The millionaire chairman of cash-and-carry firm United Wholesale Grocers switched his allegiance from Labour to the SNP before the vote on independence.

Ramzan’s decision was particularly noteworthy, given his brother is a former Labour MP and his nephew, Anas Sarwar, is a shadow Labour minister. Ramzan is now a prominent SNP donor and advises the party’s leader Nicola Sturgeon as well as her predecessor Alex Salmond. 

READ MORE: On the campaign trail with “Bogeyman” Alex Salmond

Glasgow East: The Battle for Votes

This is Ground Zero in The SNP Vs. Labour Battle

At constituency level, the battle between Labour and SNP is being played out fiercely in Glasgow East.

The district, which includes some of the most deprived areas of the city, is currently held by Labour’s Margaret Curran. The Shadow Scotland Secretary won with more than 60% of the votes in 2010, but polls now show she could lose the seat to the SNP candidate, 33-year old Natalie McGarry.

Bookmark our interactive map and live results service to follow the U.K. election results.
Polls close at 10pm UK time (5pm EST) on Thursday May 7.

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