Battle lines drawn

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Ed Balls shadow chancellor slammed the SNP, claiming they do not offer a “credible alternative” in Scotland.

While visiting Glasgow to support the campaigns of Ken Macintosh and Stephen Curran, he told The Extra that Mr Curran’s competitor Ms Sturgeon is “not shouting loudly enough about the unemployment crisis”.

The MP was in a combatitive mood as he took to the streets joined by Scottish Labour leader Iain Gray, alleging that David Cameron is campaigning for an SNP win as it would “suit him down to the ground”.

SNP candidate for Eastwood Stewart Maxwell replied: “Ed Balls has shown he has no idea about Scotland, which is typical of English Labour MP’s.

“Jobs are a clear priority for the SNP and unemployment continues to decrease in Scotland. The same cannot be said for England”.

Scottish Labour leader Mr Gray compared the different challenges facing Mr Macintosh and Mr Curran.

He said: “Toppling a politician of Nicola Sturgeon’s stature in Glasgow’s southside would be a big win for Labour but Stephen’s message is more convincing to voters.

“While actions of the Tories in Westminister will make the people of Eastwood realise we need a strong Labour government in Scotland”.

Meanwhile, in Busby, local Eastwood candidates were quizzed on the state of the roads at the community council’s hustings on Monday .

Chair George McLachlan told The Extra: “None of the candidates seemed eager to make guarantees about fixing the pothole crisis”.

Jackson Carlaw, Ken Macintosh and Stewart Maxwell attended the meeting, however, newly appointed Lib Dem candidate Gordon Cochrane did not and he has confirmed his absence at Eaglesham’s hustings on Monday.

Mr McLachlan added: “If he can not be bothered to turn up to local meetings then what is the point of standing?”

Meanwhile, three further East Ren hustings have been confirmed. On Tuesday, at St Ninian’s High School, the people of Giffnock can voice their concerns to the candidates from 7.15pm.

Then, on Wednesday, East Renfrewshire Carers Centre and the East Renfrewshire Disability Action host a hustings at Woodfarm High School from 7pm.

ERDA’s chair Chris Bairds said: “There are more than 14,000 people with disabilities in East Renfrewshire.

“It’s vital our elected representatives are aware of the issues facing them, and work hard to address these in the next term of Parliament”.

On Thursday from 5.30pm at Rhuallan House, the East Renfrewshire business community will have their say at the Chamber of Commerce hustings.