The Scottish Conservative general election campaign in Moray was given a surprise boost this week with outgoing SNP MP Angus Robertson’s former election agent lining up behind their candidate.
Marc Macrae acted as Mr Robertson’s agent during the successful 2010 campaign – now, however, he has pledged his support firmly behind the bid by Douglas Ross to oust his former boss.
Mr Macrae, who was also employed as a Parliamentary Assistant to the SNP’s Richard Lochhead MSP, said: “My vote is for Douglas.
“We need independently-minded people at Westminster who can make up their own minds – what a refreshing difference it would make to have a Moray MP like that.”
There was also support for Mr Ross from Linda Gorn, who fought the Moray seat on four occasions for the Liberal Democratic party and sat as a councillor in Keith.
Now she is urging fellow Lib Dems to support Councillor Ross’s bid, saying: “I’m supporting Douglas in this election because of the way he stands up for his constituents on Moray Council and across Moray as a whole.
“He’s not afraid to ruffle feathers and ask difficult questions and I think he would be an excellent MP for the area.”
Support for Ross has also been pledged by the UKIP candidate at the 2010 general election, Donald Gatt, who insisted that the Moray seat is a two-horse race between the Tory and SNP candidates.
He said: “Moray is a two-horse race between Douglas Ross and Angus Robertson. You can vote SNP and help Ed Miliband become Prime Minister or you can vote Conservative and elect a local champion in Douglas Ross to stand up for our area.”
Welcoming the support Douglas Ross said: “I am extremely grateful for the personal endorsements I’ve received from Linda, Donald and Marc.
“It’s a fantastic start for my campaign and throws the result in Moray wide-open. I cut the SNP majority last time and if enough former Lib Dem and UKIP voters unite behind my campaign then the seat is for the taking.
“58% of Moray’s voters said No in the referendum but the SNP seem intent on ignoring them and taking their support for granted. If the silent majority decides to make its voice heard then I will be the MP for Moray on 7th May.”
There are six candidates for the Moray seat with Douglas Ross and Angus Robertson being opposed by James MacKessack-Leitch (Greens), Sean Morton (Labour), Jamie Paterson (Lib Dem) and Rob Scorer (UKIP).