Alex Salmond marks longest-serving First Minister record with tour of Edinburgh and Glasgow

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ALEX Salmond is to tour Edinburgh and Glasgow today to mark his record as Scotland’s longest-serving First Minister.

He completes 2,002 full days in office today, beating the record of his predecessor Jack McConnell.

He took office after the SNP’s election victory in 2007, before winning for a second time last year in a landslide victory which laid the foundations for the ­independence referendum in two years’ time.

In a statement released last night, deputy first minister Nicola Sturgeon offered her congratulations.

“The people of Scotland overwhelmingly trust the Scottish Government headed by Alex Salmond – 71 per cent trust the Scottish Government to act in Scotland’s interests, up from 51 per cent under the previous Lab/Lib Executive, and compared to just 18 per cent who trust the UK government,” she said.

Mr Salmond will begin his day making a speech in Edinburgh at a Church of Scotland conference, to argue that his government had helped people through tough times by abolishing prescription charges and freezing council tax. He will then travel to Glasgow to make a Commonwealth Games announcement and to visit a school.

New polls show that the SNP remains ahead of Labour, 40 per cent to 35 per cent in Holyrood voting intentions, however the gap has closed in recent months.

Mr Salmond personally has a net satisfaction rating of +10 per cent, down from earlier this year, but still the highest of his political rivals at Holyrood.

Mr McConnell also congratulated Mr Salmond yesterday on surpassing the length of his time in office. Both were in the job for longer than Donald Dewar, who served from 1999 until his death in October 2000, and Henry McLeish, from October 2000 to November 2001.