WATCH: Oblivious SNP candidate John Nicolson gets heckled after getting his own constituency wrong

Written by John Johnston on 27 November 2019 in Diary
Diary

John Nicolson has learnt the hard way that you don't get a second chance to make a first impression.

The veteran SNP figure made a bold pitch to voters during a scheduled hustings after he asked them to "trust" him before getting the seat he was standing in completely muddled up.

Mr Nicolson is running for the marginal Ochil and South Perthshire seat after being ousted from his previous patch, East Dunbartonshire, by Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson in 2017.

But it appears the former SNP MP has not fully recovered from the defeat after he was filmed mixing up the two seats during a debate between the hopefuls in Alloa town hall on Tuesday evening.

He said: "Please trust me with your vote on December 12th. As you know, only the Scottish National Party can beat the Tories here in East Dunbartonshire and with all due respect to my Lib Dem and Labour colleagues, the other parties lag far behind."

 

 

Despite a wave of heckles and shouts from the audience, a bemused Mr Nicolson continued with his remarks, adding: "I will work hard for you, I will always listen and I won't let you down."

The embarassing gaffe comes after Mr Nicolson faced accusations of being a carpet-bagger who had been dropped into the seat by party leaders.

Scottish Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser said the incident had made the SNP candidate a "laughing stock".

"It was well know he was parachuted in to Ochil and South Perthshire last month by Nicola Sturgeon," he said. 

"You'd think by now that he would have worked out where he was. People have had enough of SNP placemen thinking they can walk in with a God-given right to a seat."

Elsewhere, a Yorkshire Tory candidate decided to tackle claims he had been "parachuted" into his seat head-on by organising an actual skydive.

Imran Khan was accused by his Wakefield Labour opponent Mary Creagh of being dropped into the seat after the previous Conservative candidate was forced to step down for making a series of offensive social media posts.

 

 

But speaking after the stunt, Mr Khan said: "I'm here because I'm standing for Parliament. I'm going to be the candidate for Wakefield for the Conservatives.

“My opponent has said that I was going to be parachuted in, and [asked] if I'll be any better than the last candidate, so I want to prove her wrong."

He added: "I couldn't figuratively to parachute in - and I didn't want to disappoint her - so I decided I would literally parachute in."

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