East Dunbartonshire

2015 Result:
Conservative: 4727 (8.6%)
Labour: 6754 (12.3%)
Lib Dem: 19926 (36.3%)
SNP: 22093 (40.3%)
Green: 804 (1.5%)
UKIP: 567 (1%)
MAJORITY: 2167 (3.9%)

Category: Marginal SNP seat

Geography: Scotland, West. Part of the East Dunbartonshire council area.

Main population centres: Bearsden, Bishopbriggs, Milngavie, Lenzie.

Profile: East Dunbartonshire covers the rural hinterland and affluent commuter towns to the north of Glasgow. It is a desirable residential area with a high rate of owner-occupiers, favoured by Glasgow`s middle class professionals.

Politics: Dunbartonshire East was created in 2005, bringing together the more middle class parts of the old Strathkelvin and Bearsden and Clydebank and Milngavie seats. In England it would almost certainly have been a new Conservative seat, but in Scotland they languish in a poor fourth place. Between 2005 and 2015 it was held by the Liberal Democrat MP Jo Swinson who managed to keep most of her vote share in 2015, but managed to lose her seat anyway as Labour voters deserted en masse for the SNP.


Current MP
JOHN NICOLSON (SNP) Born Glasgow. Educated at Glasgow University. Former journalist. First elected as MP for Dunbartonshire East in 2015.
Past Results
2010
Con: 7431 (15%)
Lab: 16367 (34%)
LDem: 18551 (39%)
SNP: 5054 (11%)
Oth: 545 (1%)
MAJ: 2184 (5%)
2005
Con: 7708 (16%)
Lab: 15472 (33%)
LDem: 19533 (42%)
SNP: 2716 (6%)
Oth: 1295 (3%)
MAJ: 4061 (9%)
2001*
Con: 6635 (16%)
Lab: 19250 (46%)
LDem: 7533 (18%)
SNP: 6675 (16%)
Oth: 1393 (3%)
MAJ: 11717 (28%)
1997
Con: 9986 (20%)
Lab: 26278 (53%)
LDem: 4843 (10%)
SNP: 8111 (16%)
Oth: 494 (1%)
MAJ: 16292 (33%)

2015 Candidates
ANDREW POLSON (Conservative) Educated at Douglas Academy. Radio station manager.
AMANJIT JHUND (Labour) Born 1981, Glasgow. Educated at Edinburgh university. Doctor and entrepreneur. Contested Windsor 2010.
JO SWINSON (Liberal Democrat) Born 1980, Milngavie. Educated at Douglas Academy and LSE. Marketing manager. Contested Hull East 2001 and Strathkelvin and Bearsden 2003 Scottish Parliament election. MP for East Dunbartonshire 2005 to 2015. Parliamentary under-secretary for business since 2012.
WILFRED ARASARATNAM (UKIP)
ROSS GREER (Green) Educated at Strathclyde University.
JOHN NICOLSON (SNP) Born Glasgow. Educated at Glasgow University. Journalist.
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Comments - 595 Responses on “Dunbartonshire East”
  1. How can you be very centre right? Is that as in so right wing hes no too far from the centre to be centre or centre right but not quite right wing enough to be right wing on its own

  2. I suppose it is confusing. I meant more that, amongst the Lib Dems, he is ardently in the centre-right wing, meaning that not only is he at the rightward edge of his party, but he is somewhat non-elastically so, as opposed to Lamb and Swinson, who, while generally seen as being on the Lib Dems’ rightward flank, also have fairly centre-left positions within the party.

  3. I find it astonishing that Swinson could somehow be ‘Not ready’. She was first elected in the same intake as Nick Clegg, Ed Miliband and Michael Gove; has spent a decade in parliament; has been a successful minister; has been a prominent figure in the party even whilst outside parliament over the past two years. Of course I can understand that she may not want to go for it, but it is a massive shame because she is most certainly up to it and the rest of the field is so bland.

    Of the others I guess I hope Lamb wins. But the hundreds of thousands who have joined the LDs since 2015 are almost certainly composed mainly of extreme Remainers, and unlikely to go for a leader who abstained on A50 and isn’t so keen on a second referendum. As a leadership candidate I guess he would have to commit to the latter – but hard for him to go too far down the Remain route given his constituency.

  4. Mr Pitt,

    Agree on the Scottish Tories splitting or at least acquiring a lot more autonomy. On balance, the rest of the Tory party (including Cameron) was an asset to the Tories prior to the GE, but May has turned them into a liability.

    However, in the long-run, I suspect that Ruth is right and it’s best to stay with the UK Tories. Two months of incompetance from the UK-wide leadership need not continue forever.

  5. Surely talk of a proper split (always a badly thought through idea in my view) has now been put to bed. What we will, I think, see is the Scottish Tories continuing to subtly differentiate themselves from the UK party. It will be interesting to see to what extent their MPs become a cohesive bloc. They did have ‘Ruth Davidson’s candidate’ plastered all over their leaflets, and some of the new MPs are close to Ruth (one was even her Chief Whip at Holyrood), so it is possible that they might support her positions in areas she takes a different line from the government. I doubt that will extend to very frequent rebellions, but given the slimness of the majority the mere fact of 13 (12 if you discount Mundell) MPs taking a subtly different view on something would need to be taken into account.

  6. Swinson has officially been elected deputy leader.

    When she was elected, Farron called her “the future of our party.”

    In announcing for the leadership today, Cable seemed to indicate that he wanted a caretaker role more than a full, standard two elections LD leadership.

    This leads me to think that the LDs are prepping for another snap election, and they want their best-known, must experienced hand in charge for it. The plan, then, would be to have him stand down in 2-3 years regardless of whether there has been an election. If there is one, his name recognition, they would hope, could boost their vote share nationally (into double digits? Perhaps 12%?) and get their seat count closer to 20 than 10. If there is no snap election, then he gets some movement on local elections, helps steady the ship, and Swinson steps in to be the young, inspiring leader pre-election.

    If I had to guess, I’d say that’s what they’re planning.

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