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HomeNewsKate Forbes announces bid for SNP leader and first minister of Scotland.

Kate Forbes announces bid for SNP leader and first minister of Scotland.

Kate Forbes announces bid for SNP leader and first minister of Scotland.

The MSP for Skye, Lochaber, and Badenoch announced her bid for the leadership on Monday, joining health secretary Humza Yousaf and MSP Ash Regan in the race for the top position.

Kate Forbes has declared her intention to succeed Nicola Sturgeon as SNP leader and first minister of Scotland.

The finance secretary, who is currently on maternity leave following the birth of her first child, has joined health secretary Humza Yousaf and MSP Ash Regan in the race for the top position.

The MSP for Skye, Lochaber, and Badenoch announced her leadership bid in a video on Monday morning “The SNP, our nation, and our movement are at a significant crossroads.

“The decisions we make in the coming weeks will have a significant impact on our future and the future of our children.

“I cannot stand by and allow our nation’s path to independence to be obstructed.

“Our small, independent neighbors enjoy more prosperous, equitable, and environmentally friendly societies, and so should we.

“We must immediately unleash the full talent of the SNP, the broader Yes movement, and the entire nation.

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“To achieve independence, we must select a strong, competent leadership – the kind of leadership I can provide.

“I believe we require a leader capable of uniting our party and our movement. I’m a unifier.

“So that every member feels valued and able to contribute, I will reach out and listen to them.

“Also essential if we are to convince others of the benefits of independence.

“However, we also need someone with a firm grasp on our economy and finances.

“Amid a cost-of-living crisis and the need to plan for independence, my years of managing Scotland’s budget and economy have provided me with the necessary expertise.

“We require a leader who is bold, courageous, and energized, as well as youthful and ready to take on new challenges, above all else. Someone who instills confidence in you as an SNP member and in the people of Scotland to vote for a better future.

“I am that leader, and I intend to lead our party into better times with honesty and dedication for the sake of your and my children. Thank you.”

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Following Ms. Sturgeon’s unexpected resignation announcement last week, the search for a new party leader is currently underway.

SNP Deputy Leader Keith Brown and Deputy First Minister John Swinney, as well as SNP Westminster Leader Stephen Flynn, Ukraine Minister Neil Gray, Environment Minister Mairi McAllan, and Scottish Constitution Secretary Angus Robertson, have ruled themselves out of the race.

Mr. Robertson, MSP for Edinburgh Central, said he had been “encouraged by many” to run in the race, but explained: “As the father of two very young children, now is not the right time for me and my family to take on such a massive commitment.”

Ms. Forbes was thrust into the spotlight in 2020 when her predecessor Derek Mackay resigned in disgrace and she was forced to deliver the Scottish budget at the eleventh hour.

Concerns have been raised, however, that the MSP, who is a member of the Free Church of Scotland, may be at odds with the broader party and current policy on some social issues, such as the contentious gender reforms blocked by the UK government.

Ivan McKee, minister of business, described Ms. Forbes as “extremely talented” on Monday, adding that she possesses “the qualities we seek in a leader.”

Angus MacNeil, a member of the SNP, also sees Ms. Forbes as the victor, but he told Sky News that Ash Regan would “have a good chance”

For inclusion on the ballot, candidates must secure 100 nominations from at least 20 local branches by this Friday; the new SNP leader will be announced on March 27.

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