Dumfriesshire candidate Oliver Mundell received a boost to his election efforts this week when the Scottish Conservatives announced their party list rankings ahead of next year’s Holyrood elections.
Ballot papers were sent out to tens of thousands of party members and people who had demonstrated support for the Scottish Conservatives across the region.
Mr Mundell finished in a strong second place behind sitting MSP and Deputy Presiding Officer, John Scott. The Daily Telegraph, Scottish Mail and Express have all since tipped him to join Ruth Davidson in the Scottish Parliament next May, following the retirement of Alex Fergusson MSP and polls showing the party challenging Labour for second place.
This time round the regional list rankings have been decided entirely by a public vote, making the Scottish Conservatives’ selection system the most democratic in the country.
The outcome of ballots for the South of Scotland was as follows:
1. John Scott MSP
2. Oliver Mundell
3. Rachael Hamilton
4. Finlay Carson
5. Brian Whittle
6. Michelle Ballantyne
7. Alex Allison
8. Lee Lyons
Commenting, Oliver Mundell said:
"I am delighted that the party faithful have chosen to put their trust in me and that they feel I have something to offer our team next May. I will be taking nothing for granted and my plan is very much to beat the SNP here in Dumfriesshire but obviously this result is a major boost.
"I am really grateful to the thousands of local residents who took part in this new and democratic process and I hope we can carry this momentum into the New Year."