Eastwood MSP stands for Labour leader job

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Eastwood MSP Ken Macintosh has formally announced his intention to stand for Scottish Labour leader.

The Busby man hopes to follow in the footsteps of colleague Jim Murphy, former MP for the area, following his defeat for the Westminster seat and resignation as party leader in Scotland.

Mr Macintosh announced his intention to stand at a meeting with Glasgow University students, and made clear that his focus would be on “Scotland’s future, not Labour’s past”.

Promising a “fundamentally different approach to politics”, he commented: “Our fightback will not be successful unless we stop defining ourselves and our party by our opponents.

“I do not want to ask people to vote Labour to block the Tories in London or to stop the SNP in Edinburgh; I want them to want to vote Labour because we have the ideas, the vision and the values to deliver a better future for Scotland.”

Mr Macintosh referred to a “time of exceptional political engagement in Scotland” and said that he was disappointed that Labour “has not played as full a role as we could in leading this debate”.

Following the announcement, the Eastwood MSP assured constituents that it will be business as usual if he is successful in his leadership bid.

He told The Extra: “One of the first things to happen to me as an MSP was that I was asked to choose between supporting my party or supporting my constituents on the closure of the A&E department at the Victoria Infirmary.

“I have always put my constituents first and that will not change — in fact, it’s why I’m running for leader of the Scottish Labour Party.”