Alison Thewliss and Stephen Flynn vie for SNP leader’s job at Westminster

SNP MPs Alison Thewliss and Stephen Flynn have thrown their hats into the ring to be the party’s next Westminster leader.

Ms Thewliss announced the news on Twitter, saying she would be a “clear contrast” to "two men shouting at each other across the despatch box”.

She has been an MP for Glasgow Central since 2015 when she unseated current Scottish Labour leader, Anas Sarwar.

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Ms Thewliss wrote: “I’ve been working for independence for over half my life. Scotland is closer to achieving that now now than ever before.

Alison Thewliss and Stephen Flynn are vying for the SNP leadership at Westminster

“The Westminster group needs a leader who can build on Ian Blackford's achievements and demonstrate that independence, far from being abstract, is the alternative to Brexit, the cost-of-living crisis and Tory austerity.”

Ms Thewliss said she had had “no intention” of running, but now there is a vacancy, she believes she could do the job well and she has a “duty” to step up. She is currently the party’s Treasury spokesperson.

Ms Thewliss hit out at Westminster culture saying she would be a “clear contrast” to Sir Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak “shouting at each other” across the despatch box.

Mr Flynn, who has represented Aberdeen South since 2019, announced his candidacy on his Twitter account last night.

SNP MP Alison Thewliss has announced she will throw her hat into the ring to be the party’s next Westminster leader.

He wrote: “Few working-class folk ever make it to parliament, fewer still run to be political leaders. Even fewer do so having spent almost the entirety of their teenage and adult years battling a physical disability. Your experiences tend to shape you and I am no different.”

Mr Flynn also hit out at Westminster culture, adding: “We have the people, the skills and the know how – we just need the power. Because the answers to the problems we face don’t lie in Westminster. The Tories will keep shredding our relationship with Europe and the Labour Party will cheer them on.”

Mr Flynn said he would be a “strong voice” for Scotland at Westminster and has asked colleagues to “put their faith” in him.

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Ian Blackford announced last week that he was standing down as the SNP’s Westminster leader. His deputy, Kirsten Oswald, tweeted on Friday that she will also stand down.