Angus Robertson elected depute leader of the SNP

Written by Jenni Davidson on 13 October 2016 in News

“We are very, very close to independence,” says SNP House of Commons leader Angus Robertson, elected with 52 per cent of vote from SNP members

Depute leader election - credit Aimee Wachtel/Holyrood

Angus Robertson has been elected the new depute leader of the SNP

“We are very, very close to independence,” he said after his election was announced. 

The MP for Moray, who is leader of the SNP group in the House of Commons, was elected by party members with 52.5 per cent of the vote.


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Fellow MP Tommy Sheppard received 25.53 per cent of the vote, MEP Alyn Smith got 18.6 per cent and Inverclyde councillor Chris McEleny got 3.3 per cent.

Robertson has been the MP for Moray since 2001 and SNP Westminster group leader since 2007.

The former journalist is also the party’s spokesperson for foreign affairs and defence.

Robertson said he was “bowled over” by being selected in what he described as a “model election process”.

He also noted the balance in having the leader at Holyrood and depute leader at Westminster, while he represents a rural part of the country and Sturgeon a constituency in Glasgow.

“We are the Scottish National Party, representing the whole of the country no matter where they come from,” he said.

He continued: “We are very, very close to independence and we must start campaigning right now.”

The party must reach the 55 per cent who voted no in 2014 and making that happen was a key part of his job as depute leader.

“Thank you for doing me a tremendous honour,” he concluded.

Commenting on the result, Nicola Sturgeon said: “We had four first class candidates to choose from.

“Indeed, we had more quality in our race for depute than Labour managed in its election for leader.”

Robertson replaces Stewart Hosie, who is stood down following revelations concerning his private life.

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