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The Scottish Green Party has confirmed that Patrick Harvie, co-convener of the party and an MSP for Glasgow since 2003, will be contesting the constituency of Glasgow Kelvin in 2016. He will also be first on the Green Party’s regional list for Glasgow.

The Greens have performed very strongly in Glasgow Kelvin in the past, in last year’s European Elections winning 4764 votes, to Labour’s 4799 and the SNP’s 4817—making it effectively a three-way tie.

Patrick said, ‘I am delighted to be seeking the support of voters in Kelvin constituency, as well as across Glasgow region. It’s been an honour to represent the city in the Scottish Parliament for the past twelve years and I believe the time is right to contest the constituency vote.’

He added, ‘We have a strong team in Glasgow, with four Green councillors who have made a huge impact in their communities. With that track record, we are campaigning to win Kelvin in 2016.’

Zara Kitson, second on the Green regional list for Glasgow in 2016, said that ‘due to his hard work and constructive attitude in parliament and in Glasgow, and as a leading figure during the independence referendum, Patrick has rightly earned a big reputation. I know so many people will be eager to see him elected to serve the Kelvin constituency.’

This is only the second time the Scottish Greens has ever stood a candidate in a constituency contest for Holyrood. In 2007, Martin Bartos, a councillor for Partick West and the Glasgow North Westminster candidate in 2005, 2010 and 2015, stood in Glasgow Kelvin. He came third with 12.6% of the vote.

In order to win Glasgow Kelvin, Patrick and his campaign will need to mobilise a grassroots campaign on a massive scale, but a victory would represent a incredible step forward for the Scottish Greens. The party would be able to establish its first local base of support and present itself as a major player in the Scottish elections.

Combined with a strong showing for the Scottish Greens in the regional lists that could see the Greens winning around 10% of the regional vote, as polls suggest—indicating the Greens would win 8-12 MSPs, with at least one in each of the eight regions—2016 could mark the year the Greens make a political breakthrough in Scottish politics not yet seen anywhere else in the UK.

You can watch Patrick’s campaign video here:

William Pinkney-Baird

About William Pinkney-Baird

William is one of the Co-Editors of Bright Green.