It's rare for by-elections to have anything more than a psychological effect, but yesterday's vote in the Airyhall, Broomhill and Garthdee ward was one of the exceptions. The SNP had already overtaken the Liberal Democrats as the largest party on Aberdeen Council after a recent by-election victory, and there seems to have been a 'gentlemen's agreement' that the coalition between the two parties would switch to SNP leadership if the Lib Dems failed to make up the gap by winning this one. In the event, not only did the Lib Dems fail to win, it was the SNP who won big -
SNP 33% (+16)
Labour 23% (+10)
Conservatives 19% (-8)
Liberal Democrats 16% (-22)
So absolutely no sign of the SNP's honeymoon period coming to an end, which is cause for encouragement a week out from the Inverclyde by-election. However, with Labour being the main opponents next week, the fly in the ointment is that their support increased significantly as well. The swing from Lib Dem to SNP was a whopping 19%.