Labour used to have a stronghold over the majority of Scottish seats in the House of Commons, but its numbers have fallen over recent years as it has lost support and voters to the SNP. The 2015 election proved to be a real shock for the Scottish arm of the party – it suddenly dropped from 41 seats to just one. The SNP had swooped in and increased its majority to take 56 out of 59 possible seats, dominating Labour and Labour are yet to bounce back. Liberal Democrat candidate for North East Fife Wendy Chamberlain told Express.co.uk in an interview this week that Labour are no longer seen as the “credible” unionist alternatives to the SNP.
Her party lost to the nationalists by only two votes in the 2017 election – making this constituency the most marginal in the UK – so the unionist Lib Dems are widely believed to be SNP’s closest competitors in this part of Scotland.
She said: “I certainly think [the Lib Dems will succeed] in the seats where we are seen as the credible alternatives to the SNP, absolutely.
“The only party that that’s not going to work for is Labour. I think that’s because of Labour’s lack of clarity on the big issues, and that has really impacted negatively on them.”
Conservative candidate for Lanark and Hamilton East, Shona Haslam, agreed: “This is absolutely a two-horse race between the Conservatives and the SNP.
Nicola Sturgeon and Jeremy Corbyn (Image: Getty)
Sturgeon is campaigning to stop Brexit and to have another independence referendum next year (Image: Getty)
“It’s really important that anyone who wants to vote for Scotland to remain in the UK during this election backs Conservatives in this election.”
However, in 2017, Labour also secured a large portion of votes in Lanark and Hamilton East.
Labour had 31.9 percent of the vote, the Conservatives had 32.1 percent while the SNP secured a slim majority with 32.6 percent.
Still, up until 2010 the seat had been a Labour stronghold with up to 50 percent of the electorate voting in the party’s favour.
Another Conservative candidate, Angus Forbes who is hoping to oust the SNP in Perth and North Perthshire after the Tories lost by less than 21 votes in that constituency last time.
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Jo Swinson, Lib Dem leader, is hoping to Stop Brexit altogether (Image: Getty)
He told Express.co.uk: “The country, as in Scotland, has sort of galvanised the unionist vote around the Conservatives.