Two of the SNP's most senior MPs will face off in a selection battle for Glasgow East, according to reports. 

Alison Thewliss, the party's Home Affairs spokesperson at Westminster, will take on David Linden, the Social Justice spokesman to be the candidate for the constituency at the next general election

It will be up to local party members to decide whose name goes on the ballot paper at the next general election.

Mr Linden, who used to work for Ms Thewliss, is close to Stephen Flynn, the SNP's group leader in the Commons. 

The seat is a key target for Labour. Dame Jackie Baillie told The Times that the "SNP’s secret civil war is spilling out for all to see."


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Boundary commission changes mean Glasgow is losing a constituency at the next election, with Ms Thewliss's Glasgow Central seat being lost.

However, Patrick Grady, the MP for Glasgow North is not standing again after failing vetting. He was suspended from the Commons and forced to apologise to MPs for drunkenly touching a teenage staffer.

According to the Times, Ms Thewliss has thrown her hat into the ring for his seat as well for Glasgow East, which takes in a sizeable chunk of her Glasgow Central constituency. 

“Local party members are baffled by Alison’s decision,” one source told the paper. “The expectation among everyone – from the first minister down – was that with Patrick Grady not standing there was a good chance Alison would be standing in the north. Most members just find it a bit odd because David Linden is already in Glasgow East.”

The Herald:



Mr Linden told the Times: "I’ve been the MP for Glasgow East since 2017 and 65% of the current electorate I’ve got makes up the new seat.

"I’m going to focus on fighting for independence, fighting plans for increased capacity at the landfill in the east end and getting on with the job.”

Ms Thewliss is one of four candidates standing for the nomination in Glasgow North. The others include lawyer Rhiannon Spear, Amjid Bashir, a member of the Scots Asians for Independence executive, and Abdul Bostani, a councillor. 

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Last year, Ms Thewliss, who is close to Nicola Sturgeon, stood against Mr Flynn for the party leadership. She lost the contest.

There have been rumours that Mr Flynn is “on manoeuvres” and building a power base to eventually launch a challenge for the party leadership.

While this has been denied by sources close to Mr Flynn, he is reportedly unhappy that Humza Yousaf has made independence the SNP’s focus for the general election.

Dame Jackie said: “Thewliss and Linden going head to head for the Glasgow East seat shows that the SNP’s secret civil war is spilling out for all to see.

“The fact is that this is a deeply divided party with MPs challenging one another in a desperate attempt to save their jobs.”

Ms Thewliss has been approached for comment.