Nicola Sturgeon will never wipe out the Tory voice

David Duguid has launched a scathing attack on the first minister, accusing her of “ignoring” rural communities such as the coastal towns in Banff and Buchan.

In 2017, the Conservative took the constituency from the SNP – overturning a 14,300 majority.

And on Thursday, the distance increased as the electorate put Mr Duguid 4,118 seats ahead of the SNP’s Paul Robertson – with a total of 21,182 votes.

Mr Duguid admitted he had been “quietly confident” he would retain his seat but admitted he “hadn’t expected” to increase his majority.

Moving forward, Mr Duguid promised that protecting rural public services would be his main priority, and claimed it was an area the SNP had been “ignoring.”

 

He said: “Independence and Brexit are of course never far away, but we have moved forward to some extent – because with a majority government we can get Brexit done.

“I have no doubts Nicola Sturgeon will claim a moral victory regardless of the SNP’s losses.

“She said she would wipe out the Tories – but she certainly hasn’t done that. She’ll never wipe out the Tory voice.

“There is a strong feeling that places like Banff and Buchan that we are being left behind the central belt.”

Mr Robertson, who got 17,064 votes, insisted his anti-Brexit stance had not been wholly responsible for the defeat.

The 28-year-old, who previously worked for former MP Eilidh Whiteford, said: “The Tories had a large majority and it was always going to be a challenge.

“We fought a very hard campaign in a short timescale and put our all into this.

“This general election was very useful in shining a light on certain issues – and there was a number of high profile fisherman who made their views known – they are not all in favour of leaving the EU.”

By Kirsten Roberston in Press and Journal 14 Dec 2019