The Scottish Socialist Party National Council yesterday voted to contest the regional list seats in the Scottish Parliament elections next year and to begin the process of selecting candidates, shaping policy priorities and gathering in the necessary resources for the contest immediately.
The decision to contest next year's Holyrood elections underscores the SSP's determination to put our socialist policies before voters. We were successful in getting six MSPs elected in 2003 but the party lost them all at the last Scottish Parliament elections in 2007.
The regional list uses a form of proportional representation to "top-up" the number of MSPs elected through the traditional first-past-the-post constituency system.
As well as adamantly opposing job and service cuts, we will also be campaigning for free public transport, a massive boost to council house building and the scrapping of the hated council tax and its replacement by an income-based Scottish service tax.
As far as we are concerned there has never been a more urgent need for socialists in the Holyrood Parliament as the four big business parties conspire to slash jobs and cut services.