Former Scotland leader to bid for Westminster seat

Scotland’s former first minister, Alex Salmond, has launched his bid to win a seat at Westminster in next year’s general election.

Former Scotland leader to bid for Westminster seat

Salmond announced he is a candidate for the SNP nomination for the Gordon constituency in Aberdeenshire. Speaking in Ellon in the constituency, he said there is the “prospect of real power for Scotland” if the SNP wins a significant number of Westminster seats.

He said if “real power” cannot be exerted, Scotland faces the “bleak prospect” of further austerity.

“What has struck me more than anything else, is that in the weeks since the referendum the people of Scotland have refused to give up on the hope,” Salmond said.

“For those who voted yes, the possibility remains of real change. For many who voted no, they absolutely insist that the vow that was given to Scotland should be redeemed.

“Therefore, with so much commitment among the people, and with so much at stake for Scotland, I think it’s impossible to stand on the sidelines.

“So on this sunny day in Ellon, I can now tell you that I am a candidate for the SNP nomination for the Gordon constituency.”

Salmond said he has been struck ‘‘by the enthusiasm that people had to see Scotland move forward’’, and the “absolute determination that Scotland could still win from the referendum’’.

He said: “I think it is now clear, 11 weeks later, what we must do to ensure that progress. Firstly, the Smith commission has now reported, and as we suspected, has not lived up to what was promised.

“This is not fiscal autonomy, it is not devo-max, it is not home rule, it is certainly not near federalism.

“What it is is something which leaves 70% of taxation under control of Westminster, and more than 80% of social policy.”

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