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Why I’m Backing Jackson

Member Views is a series of opinion pieces written by Blue Beyond members.

Having grown up in the fishing town of Fraserburgh, I remember the attitude and feelings people had towards the Scottish Conservative Party and those in the fishing industry who felt as though they had been let down by the party through the 1970s & ’80s.

This made it particularly interesting when in 2009, I decided to get involved with my local party branch in Banff & Buchan. Ten years later, I’m still here, and the party has gone from strength to strength- even turning my home constituency blue in 2017 and increasing our majority in 2019.

I have been a student member, a party employee, and am now, once again, an ‘ordinary’ member & activist. Throughout this journey, I have seen the party from many different angles, and one constant support during that time was Jackson Carlaw.

I first met Jackson while I was a student at the University of Aberdeen. He could hardly contain his surprise when I introduced myself as Jim Adams ‘fae the Broch.’ Not many people from my school dared admit they were Conservative, let alone join up as a volunteer, and I’m pleased to say that Jackson’s advice was even more beneficial when I worked for the party between 2017 & 2019.

I saw Jackson campaign numerous times in the North East of Scotland, providing support to our local activist teams and never afraid to tackle any issue on the door step; and I know he applied that same approach on his constant travels around Scotland, campaigning and providing support wherever needed.

Looking ahead to the future of our party, we have a hugely important election coming up in 2021. Time is short, the stakes are high, we need an experienced leader with a track record of taking the fight to Nicola Sturgeon, and that is what Jackson provides. Jackson knows the party and can make the changes we need to win in 2021 and 2022.

Jackson has served at every level of our party in the last 40 years. He understands what needs to change in order to lead. We must move beyond the constitution and develop the dynamic policy platform which allows scots to place their trust in us to lead our country, compared to a failing SNP administration, which is offering division and failure.

Being a Brexit-backing conservative from one of Europe’s largest fishing ports, we saw our fortunes change across the North East and won seats that we hadn’t held in over thirty years on the back of Brexit. It is vitally important that we honour the promises made to the fishing community if we are to continue to build upon our success. I know that Jackson understands this and will continue to push for the best interests of Banff & Buchan and the North East corner. Scottish Conservatives under Jackson’s leadership are best placed to bring the fight to the SNP.

As a party, we must meet the challenges of the 2020s and the Post-Brexit era. Leaving the EU presents a unique opportunity, and the Scottish Conservatives must seize this in order to win. Jackson’s proposal of a dynamic and radical new policy platform will build on our successes and address those future challenges.

As Interim party leader Jackson has already successfully built the relationships necessary to lead us into both the Holyrood and Council elections, ensuring we offer the alternative Scotland needs and deserves.

For someone who has the experience, knowledge, and ability to face up against Nicola Sturgeon and her divisive government. For someone who will create policy that will expose the SNP and promote a better future for Scotland, and for someone who will build on the promises of Brexit and deliver for the North East. I encourage you all to support and vote for Jackson Carlaw to become the next leader of the Scottish Conservative & Unionist Party.

James A. Adams