SNP membership overtakes Tories for first time
3 September 2018, 13:05
SNP membership has overtaken the Tories for the first time, pushing the party of government into third place.
House of Commons Library data shows the SNP membership has just under 125,500 registered members, compared to 124,000 for the Conservatives.
A House of Commons Library spokesman tweeted: "The latest available data shows that membership of the SNP (August 2018) has surpassed the latest reported figures for the Conservatives (March 2018)."
Nicola Sturgeon reacted with amazement to official figures showing her party was now the second largest in the UK by membership.
She said: "Wow - the SNP is now officially the second biggest party in the whole of the UK."
SNP business convener Derek Mackay MSP welcomed the figures, which he said were boosted in June by the row over the so-called Brexit "power grab" on devolved governments.
"Over 7,000 people joined the SNP in just five days in June, propelling us ahead of a waning Tory party which is at risk of imploding completely over Brexit," he said.
"Like the extraordinary membership surge of 2014 joining the SNP has once again become not just a powerful symbol, but the best way to ensure Scotland's voice is heard.
"People were rightly outraged at Tory plans to remove powers from the Scottish Parliament, and that only 15 minutes were given over at Westminster to debate the impact of the EU Withdrawal Bill on devolution."