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Scottish Tory Leader Douglas Ross to Contest Controversial Seat, Ousting Recovering MP David Duguid

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Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross will contest the constituency following the decision to bar the outgoing MP David Duguid from running. David Duguid, currently recuperating from spinal surgery, had expressed interest in representing the seat in the upcoming July 4 election.

Political journalist @alixculbertson

Thursday, June 6, 2024, at 12

Douglas Ross, the leader of the Scottish Conservatives, has declared his candidacy for the next general election. He will be contesting a constituency where the anticipated Conservative candidate is currently recuperating from spinal surgery.

Mr. Ross declared his resignation from his role as a Westminster MP to focus on his responsibilities as an MSP (Member of the Scottish Parliament), in preparation for the upcoming 2026 Holyrood election campaign.

On Thursday morning, just a day before the nomination deadline, he declared his candidacy as a Member of Parliament for the newly formed Aberdehenshire North and Moray East constituency.

Stay updated: Current updates on the general election

His previous constituency of Moray has been dissolved due to recent adjustments in boundaries, and is now incorporated into a newly established district.

The constituency of Aberdeenshire North and Moray East now includes Banff and Buchan, a seat that Scottish Office Minister David Duguid has represented since 2017.

Mr. Ross's decision is expected to spark debate, with the Scottish Conservatives citing health reasons for Mr. Duguid not being chosen for the seat on Wednesday night.

Mr. Duguid expressed enthusiasm about his candidacy in the Aberdeenshire North and Moray East constituency, noting that he was recuperating well from his recent surgery.

He was recently in the ICU for a month because of a disease impacting his spinal cord.

Discover more: The legislators not seeking re-election and the key regions targeted by political parties.

Mr. Ross stated that the party faced a tough choice in disqualifying Mr. Duguid from running because he was not in good health.

He stated that he chose to run for the parliamentary seat only on Thursday morning, having not previously envisioned himself as a candidate in this election.

"He stated, "It's essential that I take the initiative," he declared. "I'm going to run for the seat and my goal is to outperform the SNP, replicating my previous successes, so that we can concentrate on the main concerns of the residents."

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Mr. Ross commended Mr. Duguid, referring to him as a "friend and colleague" who has established a robust and notable reputation as an advocate for fishing and various other matters.

He stated: "I anticipate the SNP will use all their resources against me. They'll send squads from the central belt up here to distribute flyers.

"John Swinney is set to make an uncommon trip to the region, while the SNP's central office in Edinburgh plans to funnel funds into Aberdeen North and Moray East."

Mr. Ross acknowledged that there might be "worries" from local constituents about how Mr. Duguid was handled.

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The SNP swiftly criticized Mr Ross's action, labeling the handling of Mr Duguid as "unjustifiable."

"Things have taken a turn for the worse at the despicable party," stated SNP campaign leader Stewart Hosie.

Deputy leader of Scottish Labour, Dame Jackie Baillie, expressed that the decision proves "Ross is willing to break any promise."

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A recent YouGov survey, conducted in collaboration with Sky News, indicates that the constituencies of Aberdeenshire and Moray East are likely to remain under Conservative control. Meanwhile, the district combining Moray West, Nairn, and Strathspey, largely comprising what was previously known as Mr. Ross's Moray seat, appears poised to shift towards SNP dominance.

In addition to Mr. Ross, the officially announced contenders for Aberdeenshire North and Moray East include:

• Ian Bailey represents the Liberal Democrats.

• Andrew Brown is a candidate from the Labour Party.

• Seamus Logan is with

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