Four SNP councillors in Glasgow are looking to become MSPs next year at the 2021 election.

They are among more than 100 in the SNP who are hopeful of winning nominations to be the party candidate in around 30 seats across the country.

The internal battles to be selected as SNP candidates has this year attracted much attention and selection contests will take place in 31 seats, including ten where a veteran Holyrood politician is retiring.

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Others are held by other parties but the SNP are hopeful of taking them.

Also a change in party rules means that hopefuls no longer need a threshold of local branch signatures to force a contest with a sitting MSP.

In two Glasgow seats the current MSPs are facing a challenge to be the candidate again.

One is in Cathcart, where James Dornan is the MSP,.

Jen Layden, a Glasgow City Councillor for the Calton ward, is seeking to replace him as the party’ candidate.


Glasgow Times:

Ms Layden is convenor of Equalities and Human Rights in the SNP administration at the City Chambers.

She faces a three-way contest with Mr Dornan, and Junaid Ashraf, a North Lanarkshire councillor in Cumbernauld.

Mr Dornan has won in Cathcart twice, in 2011 and again in 2016 with a hugely increased majority of 9000.

In three of the four Glasgow examples, the seats the councillors are looking to stand in are outside Glasgow.

Anne McTaggart, SNP councillor for Drumchapel/Anniesland is bidding to be the candidate in Clydebank and Milngavie where long serving MSP Gil Paterson is stepping down from the seat he last won with a majority of more than 8000.

Ms McTaggart jumped ship from Labour last year to join the SNP after criticising Labour in Glasgow.

Glasgow Times:

She has previously been a Labour list MSP and before that a Labour councillor.

She also held both councillor and MSP posts simultaneously in a dual mandate for a year. She faces competition from four others for the candidacy.

Rhiannon Spear, SNP councillor for Greater Pollok, is seeking to stand in Argyll and Bute, where SNP cabinet minister Michael Russell is standing down leaving a majority of almost 6000.

Glasgow Times:

Ms Spear, who is from Bute, is also a member of the SNP ruling National Executive Committee.

Graham Campbell, SNP councillor for Springburn/Robroyston is seeking to move along the M8 and be the candidate for Edinburgh Western, where the Liberal Democrats hold the seat with Alex Cole Hamilton winning in 2016 with a majority of 2960.

Glasgow Times:

Mr Campbell a prominent Black Lives Matter protester, previously stood for election in Glasgow for Tommy Sheridan’s Solidarity Party before he joined the SNP.

Six others are contesting the Edinburgh Western nomination.

The Glasgow Times attempted to contact the four politicians to ask if they would be standing down as councillor if selected in their chosen seats.

Also if they would give a message to their current ward constituents about seeking to stand somewhere else.

However, we were unable to reach any for comment.

Councillors in other parties in Glasgow are also seeking nominations to be parliamentary candidates in 2021.

The Glasgow Times plans to report on them and will be seeking to speak to them also.