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Keith Brown enters race for SNP depute leadership

Keith Brown - David Anderson/Holyrood

Keith Brown enters race for SNP depute leadership

Economy Secretary Keith Brown has entered the race to become SNP depute leader.

The Clackmannanshire and Dunblane MSP is the third person to enter the race to become Nicola Sturgeon's deputy, following fellow MSP James Dornan and activist Julie Hepburn.

However Brown is the most senior party member so far to enter the contest.

"I've taken the advice of senior colleagues past and present, people I like and respect, and I'm pleased to be putting my name forward," he told the National newspaper.

"There's a serious job for the depute leader in supporting Nicola and getting the party in shape to face the future."

He added that building the case for independence would remain his focus.

"We need to get all of our members ready to fight and win elections, and to be ready for any future referendums - getting the party ready and giving the members the tools they need will be my focus," he added.

Brown is a former Royal Marine who has been Transport Minister and Infrastructure Secretary before becoming Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work following the 2016 election.

So far no MPs have entered the race, with Westminster leader Ian Blackford and others ruling themselves out.

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