I would like to thank the returning officer and his staff for the tremendous work they did during the Scottish Parliament election for the new constituency of Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale which proved to be a very difficult night and morning.
I would also like to thank all the people at the count, all who spent a long day in the polling stations, and Lothian and Borders Police. Most of all I would like to thank Borders people, not only those who voted Labour, but all who used their democratic right to vote.
It was my great pleasure to have met so many of you during the campaign and thank you for the friendly manner in which you greeted me and my team.
I would like to congratulate the SNP candidate on winning this constituency. Now is the time for her and the new government to deliver on the manifesto they put to the Scottish people – they can no longer blame others, be it Holyrood or Westminster, as they are now a majority government and they stated their manifesto was fully funded.
I would also like to thank the other two candidates, Jeremy Purvis and Peter Duncan, for the fair and honest way they conducted their campaigns.
Labour had a bad night, a political party founded by Scotsmen in Scotland to fight for social justice, from Keir Hardie to Ramsay McDonald, John Smith, Donald Dewar to Gordon Brown – all great Scotsmen fighting for a fairer society for all.
We in Scottish Labour today shall never waver from this. We shall take this defeat on the chin, dust ourselves down and come back stronger, fighting for the working people of Scotland.
(Scottish Labour candidate, Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale)