A one issue General Election - Brexit.

Calum Kerr, SNP MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk
Calum Kerr, SNP MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk

Berwickshire MP Calum Kerr has questioned the Prime Ministers’s motives for calling a General Election on June 8.

“The naked opportunism behind this move puts the interests of an increasingly right-wing Tory Party before those of the country,” said Mr Kerr.

John Lamont (Scottish Conservative)
Duns election hustings.

John Lamont (Scottish Conservative) Duns election hustings.

“It has become clear to me that the Prime Minister knows she is losing the argument and that she has called this election so that it is out of the way before the full impact of Brexit becomes clear.”

As the country gets over the shock announcement made on Tuesday, April 18, the dust will barely have settled on the May 3 council elections in the Scottish Borders before the political parties move into General Election mode.

The region’s farming community is also trying to work out the impact it will have on the area. NFU Scotland president Andrew McCornick said: “For Scottish farmers, crofters and food producers looking for certainty and confidence in an uncertain, Brexit-dominated lanscape, this announcement will only add to mounting questions about the future.

“Clearly, this election will be fought on one overarching issue – Brexit.

“It is absolutely vital that the significant interests of the agricultural industry are heard properly in this election campaign given our clear interest in the Brexit negotiations.

In the 2015 General Election, SNP candidate Calum Kerr, ousted sitting MP Michael Moore (Lib Dem) and beat Conservative hopeful John Lamont into second place.

There was no hesitation from Mr Kerr about standing for re-election in the Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk constituency.

“I welcome this opportunity to go back to the people who elected me and make a renewed case for representing the region I’m proud to call home,” said Mr Kerr.

“To vote Tory in June is endorse a hard Brexit and to provide the government with an unconstrained mandate.

“In holding the government to account on Brexit, it has become clear to me that the Prime Minister knows she is losing the argument and that she has called this election so that it is out of the way before the full impact of Brexit becomes clear.

“Since I was elected, I have fought first and foremost for the issues that matter most to my constituents.

“On the front bench at Westminster and in our local communities, I have stood up for the interests of the rural economy, taken forward the pressing issue of digital connectivity and worked with people of all parties, and none, on issues that matter to the Borders.

“I cannot overstate how much of an honour it has been to represent the people of Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk over the past two years.

“Given the immense challenges we face, there is no doubt in my mind that there is so much more work that needs to be done to protect the interests of the Borders.”

Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire MSP, and previous Westminster candidate, John Lamont (Conservative) supports the Prime Minister’s decision. “I very much welcome the Prime Minister’s announcement and agree an election in June is necessary to secure the strong and stable leadership the UK needs to see us through Brexit and beyond,” he said.

“Voters in the Borders will have a clear choice between the SNP, who will use this campaign to try and manufacture a case for separation, and the Scottish Conservatives who will stand up for a strong Government to get the best Brexit deal for Scotland.

“The Borders is currently represented by an MP who is pushing for a re-run of the Scottish independence referendum and who does not accept the result of the UK wide EU referendum last year. The Borders and the UK deserves a strong Government, not the division and political game playing that the SNP and Labour are obsessed with.

“Local party members will be selecting the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party candidate for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk in the coming days.”