Leader of Scottish Conservatives quits

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, July 31, 2020
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LONDON, July 30 (Xinhua) -- The leader of the Scottish Conservatives quit Thursday without notice in a move seen as a setback to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Jackson Carlaw, who only took over the job as leader of the Scottish Conservatives six months ago, said he had been thinking hard about his role as leader over the summer months.

The Scottish Conservatives, officially the Scottish Conservative & Unionist Party, is the second largest party in the Scottish Parliament, behind the governing Scottish National Party (SNP) led by Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

Political commentators in Scotland have speculated that the Conservatives face a battle to prevent the SNP winning a majority in next year's Holyrood elections.

Despite Sturgeon's ambitions to push for Scottish independence, Johnson has insisted he will not agree to a new referendum.

In a statement, Carlaw said he did not believe he was the best person to lead the case for Scotland remaining in Britain, and he had decided to stand down with immediate effect.

Carlaw said he was confident he was leaving the party in good heart, with time to elect a new leader to prepare for the elections next year.

Senior politicians from different parties in the Scottish parliament said they had no idea of Carlaw's intention to resign until he quit. The search for a successor has already started.

Currently the SNP has 61 seats, with the Scottish Conservatives holding 31 and the Scottish Labour 23. The rest are held by minority parties. The opposition's total denies the SNP an overall majority at Holyrood. Enditem

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