A SNP MP Lisa Cameron has introduced she is quitting the occasion and defecting to the Conservatives over the “poisonous and bullying” therapy from colleagues at Westminster.
The backbencher will now sit with the Tory occasion within the Commons reasonably than spark a by-election in her East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow seat.
The livid SNP chief Humza Yousaf accused Ms Cameron of “betrayal” for switching to the Tories – demanding that the MP “do the honourable factor” and resign her seat.
Coming simply days earlier than the SNP convention, Mr Yousaf stated: “To see any individual who claims to have supported Scottish independence cross the ground to the Conservative and Unionist Get together betrays the truth that she most likely by no means believed within the trigger within the first place.”
Ms Cameron blamed her SNP colleagues in parliament for the “deterioration” of her psychological well being and being placed on antidepressants – revealing that she had acquired help from Rishi Sunak.
The defecting MP stated she had been badly handled over her choice to help the harassment sufferer of fellow SNP MP Patrick Grady. She additionally lashed out on the “division” brought on by the occasion’s push for Scottish independence.
In an announcement, the MP stated: “Households like mine skilled vital division relating to the difficulty of [Scottish] independence”. She added: “I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s extra useful to focus my energies upon constructive insurance policies that profit everybody throughout the 4 nations of the UK.”
Labour’s Ian Murray MP, the shadow Scottish secretary, stated Ms Cameron had had let down her constituents and “proven her true colors” by defecting to the Tories.
Mr Sunak stated he was “delighted” that Ms Cameron has determined to hitch the Conservatives. “Lisa is true that we must always goal to do politics higher, with extra empathy and fewer division and a dedication to at all times doing what we expect is true.”
She had spoken out over Mr Grady and challenged how the management dealt with sexual harassment allegations in opposition to her colleage. The previous SNP Westminster chief Ian Blackford had reportedly stated in a bunch assembly that the occasion ought to supply “absolute full help” to Mr Grady.
The Commissioner for Requirements concluded final 12 months that Mr Grady had breached sexual misconduct coverage – upholding a grievance that he had made “an undesirable sexual advance” to a junior member of workers”.
Saying her choice to give up on Thursday, Ms Cameron stated: “I don’t really feel in a position to proceed in what I’ve skilled as a poisonous and bullying SNP Westminster group.”
She stated it had “resulted in my requiring counselling for a interval of 12 months in parliament and triggered vital deterioration in my well being and wellbeing as assessed by my GP together with the necessity for antidepressants”.
Ms Cameron stated she would “by no means remorse my actions in standing up for a sufferer of abuse by the hands of an SNP MP final 12 months” – however had misplaced religion within the occasion’s management.
Ms Cameron was set to be challenged quickly for the SNP nomination in her East Kilbride constituency on the subsequent common election.
The MP stated solely final month that she “can’t solely rule out” forcing a by-election instantly if she was not nominated to face once more by the occasion.
However she is just not considered keen to name a by-election after her exit from the occasion, and can as an alternative sit as a Tory MP till the overall election anticipated in 2024.
Andy Maciver – the Scottish Tories’ former media chief – stated the SNP could be “delighted, after they give it some thought”.
The host of the Holyrood Sources podcast stated it meant SNP get to interact their base by complaining in regards to the Tories with out the necessity for the “bruising” by-election Ms Cameron had threatened. “The Tories get one other MP and a little bit of enjoyable. Labour get to say ‘we’re the choice’. Everybody’s blissful.”
Conservative MP John Lamont posted a “heat welcome” to his new colleague on Twitter, whereas Tory MSP Murdo Fraser stated it was an indication that the SNP was “imploding”. Scottish Conservative chief Douglas Ross stated: “It’s nice to have Lisa Cameron on board.”
Ms Cameron praised Mr Sunak and stated she was “notably grateful” to him for reaching out to her after receiving “no contact from occasion management up to now weeks” regardless of her psychological well being struggles.
The brand new Tory MP added: “It’s the first time I’ve felt heard and reveals constructive, inclusive management in distinction to that which I’ve encountered within the SNP at Westminster over a few years.”