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by Staff reporter
06 October 2023
Labour beats SNP to seal 'seismic' by-election win

Labour candidate Michael Shanks has won the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election

Labour beats SNP to seal 'seismic' by-election win

Labour has sealed victory in the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election, with the party's candidate, Michael Shanks, taking the Westminster seat with more than double the number of votes polled by the SNP's Katy Loudon.

Turnout for the by-election was just 37.19 per cent, down from the 66.5 per cent at the last election. The result represented a swing of 20.4 per cent from the SNP to Labour.

SNP deputy leader Keith Brown said the party had run a "positive, energetic and engaging campaign" but had been unable to "deliver the result we hoped for".

“As the Tories face the prospect of losing all their seats in Scotland, with a devastating result that saw them lose their deposit, it's Sir Keir Starmer’s pro-Brexit Labour Party that benefited from support from Tory voters," he said.

”It’s undeniable that the Westminster cost of living crisis was the top issue for people on the doorsteps and it’s now imperative that the UK government finally wakes up to deliver meaningful support ahead of another potentially crippling winter."

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar said the "seismic" result shows that Scotland is "crying out for change".

“This result is not just a reflection of our fantastic campaign – it is also the result of Scots growing weary of SNP and Tory failure and turning to Scottish Labour to deliver change," he said.

“It is a result not two months in the making, but two years in the making. The people of Scotland can see that Scottish Labour has changed and is ready to deliver.

“The contest is clear – while the SNP and Tory governments offer more division and incompetence, Scottish Labour is now the unrivalled party of change.

“Before tonight, Scottish Labour had not won a parliamentary by-election in 12 years - this is a turning point in Scottish politics, and it shows that the SNP and the Tories can be beaten.

“It’s clear that Scotland can lead the way in kicking out the Tories and delivering a Labour government. At the next General Election a vote for Scottish Labour will deliver the change that Scotland and the UK needs.”

The by-election was called after former SNP MP Margaret Ferrier was ousted by her constituents for breaking Covid rules.


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