SNP selects by-election candidate

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Indy Politics

The Scottish National Party has selected its candidate to succeed the late David Cairns as the new MP for Inverclyde.

Anne McLaughlin will contest the seat for the SNP in a by-election later this year.

Mr Cairns, who had pancreatitis, died on May 9. He held the seat for Labour in 2010 with a majority of 14,416.

However, in the nearest equivalent Holyrood constituency, Greenock and Inverclyde, Labour's lead slumped to just 511 in the Scottish Parliament elections last month.

Ms McLaughlin most recently served in the Scottish Parliament as a regional MSP for Glasgow, and was on the parliament's Public Petitions and Public Audit Committees.

She was born in Greenock and grew up in Port Glasgow.

After she was chosen by party members at a selection meeting in Greenock last night, she said jobs and investment in Inverclyde were at the top of her agenda.

She said: "It is an honour to be selected to stand in Inverclyde.

"David Cairns was a well respected local MP and I hope to win the same respect across the constituency that he held.

"I spent my childhood here and my family live in Gourock and Port Glasgow.

"Inverclyde has always been home to me and it would be a great privilege to represent the people of this constituency at Westminster.

"I am looking forward to getting out on the doorsteps and in the town centres from now until the by-election listening to the views of local people and setting out the SNP's positive agenda to bring jobs and opportunities to Inverclyde. As a politician who never gives up I can promise my absolute commitment to people in every part of this constituency.

"A few weeks ago the public elected an SNP Government for action on jobs, the NHS, a council tax freeze and a better Scotland. By sending an SNP representative to Westminster Inverclyde can build on that progress and win a more powerful voice for people across the constituency."