Saturday Fright Fever! Dad-dancing Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf channels his inner John Travolta at SNP by-election campaign launch
- The SNP leader tweeted a photo and jokingly added to not ‘rely’ on his moves
- Humza Yousaf pleaded at yesterday’s campaign launch to not punish his party
Dad-Dancing Humza Yousaf tried to channel his inner John Travolta during the launch of the SNP’s by-election campaign yesterday.
But the First Minister’s hopes of staying alive in the battle for the Rutherglen and Hamilton West seat look as likely to succeed as his dance moves. The SNP leader yesterday pleaded with voters not to punish his party for the crimes of former MP Margaret Ferrier.
After these pictures were posted online, Mr Yousaf sought to reassure activists by tweeting: ‘Luckily, Katy Loudon’s fortunes as a candidate don’t rely on my dance moves… now if it was bhangra we might be on to something!’
Humza Yousaf has been accused of underestimating voters’ fury ahead of a crunch by-election as he was warned swathes of independence supporters cannot bring themselves to vote SNP.
Rutherglen and Hamilton West residents have ousted Covid rule-breaker Margaret Ferrier, leaving the Nationalists desperately battling to retain the seat.
Kicking off the election campaign yesterday, Scottish Labour’s candidate revealed that there were ‘many, many examples’ of Yes voters shunning the scandal-ridden SNP.
Labour’s Michael Shanks warned Mr Yousaf the SNP was in denial about how disillusioned independence supporters were with the party.
But the First Minister attempted to distance his party’s campaign from the legacy of the disgraced Ms Ferrier, as he tries to avoid a humiliating loss in his first electoral test as leader.
Voters in Rutherglen and Hamilton West this week kicked out Ms Ferrier following Scotland’s first recall petition, which was launched after she broke Covid rules by travelling between London and Glasgow while knowingly infected.
Almost 15 per cent of Ms Ferrier’s ‘absolutely furious’ constituents signed the petition to oust her, triggering a by-election in which Scottish Labour are attempting to overturn the SNP’s 5,230 majority.
After these pictures were posted online, Mr Yousaf sought to reassure activists by tweeting: ‘Luckily, Katy Loudon’s fortunes as a candidate don’t rely on my dance moves…’
The First Minister added in his tweet: ‘Now if it was bhangra we might be on to something!’
But the First Minister’s hopes of staying alive in the battle for the Rutherglen and Hamilton West seat look as likely to succeed as his dance moves
Dad-Dancing Humza Yousaf tried to channel his inner John Travolta during the launch of the SNP’s by-election campaign yesterday
Mr Shanks, a modern studies teacher who says he has knocked on around 20,000 doors trying to persuade people to kick out Ms Ferrier, said the SNP was in denial about the anger towards it and Ms Ferrier’s behaviour, as well as concerns about the police probe looming over the party.
Mr Shanks said he had encountered independence-supporting constituents who refused to support the SNP in the crunch vote.
He said: ‘I don’t think the SNP quite believed the number of people we’re getting on the doors who have exactly the same story. The other day there was a woman who showed me her SNP membership card and was not voting SNP.
‘The reality is independence is the only issue the SNP have got to focus on in this, and for us we need to move beyond that onto other priorities. Day to day, people bring up a load of issues that have nothing to do with independence.’
Challenged about disillusioned independence supporters seeing Labour as an alternative, Mr Yousaf said: ‘This by-election is about independence, because independence is the only sure-fire way to scrap cruel Tory policies.
‘But equally it will be about a stark choice for people to vote for an SNP MP that stands up for the country, stands up for the constituency, or you vote for a Labour MP that backs Keir Starmer’s position on the two-child limit and the bedroom tax.’
SNP candidate Katy Loudon said the probe which saw Nicola Sturgeon, her husband Peter Murrell and former party treasurer Colin Beattie arrested, then later released, was ‘not ideal’. as her campaign started.
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