Ian Murray qualifies for Labour deputy leadership race

Published by Scott Challinor on January 10th 2020, 11:30am

Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray has secured the required number of nominations from Labour MPs and MEPs to allow him to run in the party’s deputy leadership contest.

Candidates must secure a minimum of 22 nominations to qualify, with Murray winning 29, including from the party’s chief whip Nick Brown.

Murray will be up against shadow education secretary Angela Rayner, who has received 71 nominations to run, while MPs Dawn Butler, Richard Burgon and Rosena Allin-Khan have also announced plans to stand.

Murray is the only Labour MP left in Scotland, having secured his Edinburgh South seat with an 11,000 majority while the party’s six other MPs conceded their seats in Westminster to the SNP.

Murray said: "I'm now relishing the chance to get out there and speak to members in every region and nation of the UK during the campaign.

"This is an opportunity to rebuild the Labour Party into an alternative government for the future, not a protest movement of the past."

Elsewhere, Labour MPs Rebecca Long-Bailey, Lisa Nandy and Jess Phillips have all won enough support to contest the race to become the party’s next leader, alongside shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer.

Murray has been a critic of outgoing leader Jeremy Corbyn and said earlier in the week that it was "quite clear" that the party should move away from his socialist policy agenda, electing a new leader with "fresh ideas and a fresh approach".

He said: "This is about having a proper debate about the direction of the Labour Party and where it should go.

"I think the leadership candidates will be addressing some of those big questions over the next three months and I hope that Labour Party members respond positively to them."

Murray has also called for Labour to adopt a far clearer stance on the issues of Scottish independence and Brexit in the future.

He said: “On the major constitutional issues of our time - Scottish independence and Brexit - we must be clear with people where we stand.

"We should always be a pro-EU and pro-UK party because it is not just in the national interest, but part of our values."

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Authored By

Scott Challinor
Business Editor
January 10th 2020, 11:30am

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