Monday, 22 Apr 2024

POLL – Who should be the next SNP leader?

Nicola Sturgeon’s resignation celebrated by Scots in Glasgow

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In a surprise press conference last Wednesday, Nicola Sturgeon resigned as Scottish National Party (SNP) leader. After a week of speculation and political jostling, three candidates remain in the running. But who do you think should take her place? Vote in our poll.

Nicola Sturgeon announced she was stepping down as SNP leader and Scottish First Minister last Wednesday. After eight years in the job, she had held the position for longer than anyone else.

Denying claims that recent political tumult pushed her towards the door, Ms Sturgeon instead said the burden of the job had finally got to her: “In my head and my heart, I know that time is now.”

Without forewarning or a clear successor in place, the announcement sparked a week-long frenzy within SNP ranks. Leadership contenders required 100 nominations from at least 20 local party branches by midday on Friday.

That deadline has now passed, narrowing the “array of talent” down to just three MSPs – Humza Yousaf, Kate Forbes and Ash Regan.

The debate has thus far centred on hot-button social issues. Mr Yousaf, the health secretary, pledged to pursue Ms Sturgeon’s progressive agenda, while finance minister Ms Forbes – a member of the Free Church of Scotland – has faced backlash this week by saying she would have voted against same-sex marriage had she been an MSP at the time.

Ash Regan – who formally launched her leadership bid shortly before the cutoff – resigned as Minister for Community Safety in October in protest against the controversial Gender Recognition Act.

According to a poll of SNP voters conducted between Monday and Wednesday this week, Ms Forbes is the frontrunner with 28 percent of respondents backing her. Mr Yousaf came second with 20 percent support, with Ms Regan polling at just seven percent.

SNP members will decide their next leader through the single transferable vote system, with the outcome expected to be announced on March 27.

But what do you think? Who should take the reigns from Nicola Sturgeon and lead the Scottish Parliament? Vote in our poll below and leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

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