Last Thursday’s election was a turning point in Scottish politics.
Across Scotland the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party vote nearly doubled and, in our best result since 1983, a total of 13 constituencies – from the Borders to Banffshire – returned Scottish Conservative Members of Parliament.
I am enormously proud of the campaign we fought and each and every one of the MPs we returned will be local champions for their constituencies.
I want to thank the thousands of Scottish Conservatives activists who were the engine of our campaign and everyone in Scotland who put their faith in us – we will not let you down.
But Thursday’s election has a much greater significance. It was the day on which people across Scotland delivered their verdict on the SNP’s drive for another independence referendum.
Nicola Sturgeon said independence was ‘at the heart’ of the SNP’s campaign. And in ballot boxes the length and breadth of the country, Scotland said ‘No’ to another referendum.
It could not be any clearer. A majority of people in Scotland don’t want another referendum, they have spoken and it is time Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP finally accepted it.
Instead, we need to focus on the challenges we face on education, on NHS funding, on the new tax and welfare powers coming to Scotland – as well as the huge challenge of Brexit.
So that is the work that my new team of Scottish Conservative and Unionist MPs will be getting down to, and what my group of MSPs in the Scottish Parliament will be focusing on over the months to come.
Our promise is to deliver for Scotland, not to divide – and to show how the Union can work for all of us.
It’s time to put the divisions of the past behind us and work for a better future for everyone in Scotland.
Scottish Conservative & Unionist Party