Mhairi Black makes maiden speech in the Commons

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MHAIRI Black - the youngest MP in over 300 years - made her maiden speech in the House of Commons today.

In her opening remarks, the SNP MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South first paid tribute to her predecessor, Labour heavyweight Douglas Alexander, saying: “I want to take the opportunity to commend him for the way that he handled himself on what must have been a very difficult election night.

Mhairi Black gives her maiden speech to the Commons

Mhairi Black gives her maiden speech to the Commons

“He did himself proud and he did his party proud and I wish him the best for the future.”

The 21-year-old, who recently graduated from the University of Glasgow with a first in politics, went on to deliver an impassioned speech in which she dealt blows to chancellor George Osborne’s budget.

She said: “I am now the only 20 year old in the whole of the UK whom the chancellor is prepared to help with housing.”

She also remarked on the high levels of unemployment in her constituency and the growth in the number of food banks, saying: “Food banks are not part of the Welfare State. They are a sign that the Welfare State is failing.”

In closing, she quoted the late Labour stalwart, Tony Benn and offered a hand of friendship to the Labour Party, calling for them to work together with the SNP to form an effective opposition.