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Ian Blackford says ‘I would have won’ Westminster SNP leadership race | Scottish National Party (SNP)


Ian Blackford has said he could have won the SNP race to elect a new Westminster leader had he stood.

Speaking to TalkTV on Wednesday night, Blackford, who resigned as party leader at Westminster last week, told Jeremy Kyle: “I could have seen that, I think I would have won if I m was introduced.”

SNP rules state that the leader must appear at an annual general meeting each year.

Blackford will now take on the role of trade ambassador for the SNP, advocating for corporate independence.

He was replaced on Tuesday by Aberdeen South MP Stephen Flynn amid speculation of a coup against him.

Blackford said: “Look, politics is dirty business, isn’t it? We all know that. You’re never going to please everyone, all the time.

“Some people have a different way of wanting to do things and I think it’s fair to say that some people probably wanted to see the end of my ass on the front bench. That’s fine. They deserve it.

“I discussed things with the Prime Minister and said, ‘Listen, give me a job because we have to convince business people that we have a plan for an independent Scotland’. I’m really happy to do this.

“I started, by the way, I had two meetings today, actually. Being liberated, I can do things that maybe I haven’t always been able to do.

Blackford, who represents Ross, Skye and Lochaber in parliament, added: “At the end of the day I have moved on. There is an opportunity here and Stephen has seized it. He has all my best wishes.

The former leader even joked about writing a book about his tenure.

“I’m delighted. I’m going to get my life back,” he said.

“I had been leader of Westminster for five and a half years. You mentioned four prime ministers.

” I appreciated. I mean, maybe if I write a book, I’ll call it I had a bullet, because I had a bullet.

However, Blackford said the journey to Westminster “took its toll”.

“I live just on the northern end of the Isle of Skye. I have a dreadful commute – I often have to leave at the weekend (from Scotland) and return (home) as we enter the weekend. end.

“I’m not complaining. That’s how it happened. But now I have the opportunity to change course, to change direction.

“I’m going to be the Prime Minister’s business ambassador to Scotland, still representing my constituents, but having a better work-life balance. And, you know, I felt it was time to move on, to step aside.

theguardian Gt

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