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Scottish Labour deputy leadership ballot opens tomorrow

LABOUR members in Scotland will be given their first chance to vote for their next deputy leader when ballots open tomorrow.

The Scottish Labour deputy leadership race, which began with nominations in January, sees Dumbarton MSP Jackie Baillie taking on Glasgow councillor Matt Kerr for the job. 

Mr Kerr has represented Cardonald in south-west Glasgow since 2007. 

Last week he walked out of a meeting of the council, refusing to back any city budget which represented cuts to services. 

Mr Kerr said: “We cannot go on just rearranging the deck chairs, we need to genuinely refresh our party. 

“We need our party to reconnect with our grassroots activists, and with the communities our party was formed to represent if we are to once again gain their trust. 

“Our councils, our services, and our communities need a strong Labour Party, fit for the 2020s and the challenges we all face here and now.” 

Ms Baillie faced criticism last week after contributing to a social media “pile-on” of a young activist, branded “bullying,” before refusing to apologise. 

A former chair of the party in Scotland, she has been an MSP since the opening of the Scottish Parliament in 1999, now holding a slim majority over the SNP in Dumbarton. 

Speaking at a campaign event, Ms Baillie said: “We need to change to win.

“I am sick of losing elections nationally and I am heartbroken by the result on December 12. But it’s time to pick ourselves up, rebuild as a team, reach out to our communities, and move forward together.”

Voting closes on Thursday, April 2 at noon, with the result set to be announced the following day.

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