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Ian Murray said that he was frozen out by Mr Corbyn during his five-year leadership despite being the longest-serving Scottish Labour MP after being elected in 2010. Mr Murray, who is currently the only Labour MP in Scotland recently returned to the frontbench after Sir Keir Starmer was elected party leader.
Speaking to The Herald Scotland, the Shadow Scottish Secretary said that Labour’s revival in Scotland was crucial for it to return to Downing Street in 2024.
He suggested the party would need to win 20 Scottish seats to put Sir Keir in Downing Street as well as needing the biggest ever landslide to end 14 years in opposition.
It comes after the Labour Party suffered the worst General Election result since 1935, losing 60 seats, including six in Scotland in last December’s election.
He said: “After 2017 when we returned seven Scottish MPs, I said very clearly to Jeremy Corbyn there was a pathway to Downing St if he chose to take it and if he decided not to, then the public would ultimately have the final say on his leadership of the Labour Party and it wouldn’t be something he would find particularly pleasing.
“Scotland is critically important because until you start winning seats back in Scotland, you can’t win.”
Mr Murray pointed out that if Labour returned only a single Scottish MP again in 2024, it would need a record 13 percent swing to gain the necessary extra seats in the House of Commons required for a majority.
However, the party would require a lower swing of between 10 and 11 percent to win if Labour gained at least 16 Scottish seats, the MP stressed.
The Edinburgh South MP said a double-digit number of Scottish seats was vital for the party to stand any chance of regaining power.
He said this was because of two reasons: “One is the SNP win our seats in Scotland and, therefore, we need to win Scottish seats for the mathematics of it.
“But the higher the number of seats the SNP get in Scotland, the more of a threat that is in England, which damages our chances in England as well.”
In recent years, Labour have been eased out as the SNP overwhelmingly secured the pro-independence vote and the majority of seats in Holyrood and at Westminster.
Meanwhile, the Scottish Conservatives secured the pro-union vote.
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Labour secured 56 of the 72 Scottish seats in the 1997 election when Tony Blair won by a landslide, compared to its single seat now.
Mr Murray also took a swipe at the SNP and said that Labour had to layout its prospectus for a “devolution revolution” to defeat the “extreme proposition” set out by the Nationalists to take Scotland out of the UK under IndyRef2.
It comes after a recent poll showed that more than half of Scots want a second independence referendum in the next five years.
The Ipsos MORI survey for BBC Scotland found that 63 percent of people want another referendum, 34 percent within the next two years, 19% in two to five years, and 10% after the next five years.
Going forward, the MP said that Labour’s stance going into the 2024 election was clear: “No to independence and No to a second independence referendum.”
He pointed out that the SNP’s demand for a mandate to demand a second referendum if it won an overall majority in next year’s Holyrood election was “ridiculous”.
He argued: “The mandate for Keir Starmer if he becomes PM in 2024, would be to deliver on the manifesto commitment of the radical federalism he wants to try and achieve.”
The scheme of radical federalism would involve taking powers from Holyrood and giving them to local communities in Scotland.
In a final point, Mr Murray pointed out that the Prime Minister’s poor communication on the coronavirus crisis meant it was being exploited by the SNP.
This meant that any failings were being blamed entirely on Westminster by the party.
He concluded that the Tories are in for the “fight of their lives” with Sir Keir now leading Labour.
Speaking recently, an SNP spokesman reaffirmed the importance of IndyRef2 to Scotland.
They added: “This poll shows clear and growing majority support for an independence referendum.”
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