Stewart McDonald (politician)

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Stewart McDonald

Official portrait of Stewart Malcolm McDonald crop 2.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Glasgow South
Assumed office
8 May 2015
Preceded byTom Harris
Majority2,027 (4.5%)
Personal details
Born
Stewart Malcolm McDonald

(1986-08-24) 24 August 1986 (age 32)
Glasgow, Scotland
Political partyScottish National Party

Stewart Malcolm McDonald (born 24 August 1986) is a Scottish National Party (SNP) politician. He has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Glasgow South constituency since May 2015 and is a member of the House of Commons Transport Select Committee.[1] He is currently the SNP's Spokesperson for Defence.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Castlemilk, Glasgow, his family moved to Govan when he was five years old, as his father was a caretaker at a local primary school. He left Govan High School aged eighteen, and worked in a variety of jobs including as a retail manager and a holiday rep in Tenerife before becoming a parliamentary case worker for Anne McLaughlin MSP.[3] After the 2011 Scottish Parliament Elections, he became a case worker for James Dornan MSP.[4]

Political career[edit]

He was selected unopposed as the SNP candidate for the Glasgow South constituency in October 2014. At the 2015 UK general election, McDonald was elected with 54.9% of the vote,[5] defeating the Labour incumbent Tom Harris. His total represented the largest number of actual SNP votes in the city, and the largest majority.[5]

In December 2015, McDonald came second place in the Beard Liberation Front's Parliamentary Beard of the Year Award.[6][7] He was reported to have come very close to winning first place but was narrowly defeated by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn after Labour MP Diane Abbott urged people on Twitter to vote for Corbyn in the contest.[8][7]

He supports Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV prevention to be available on the NHS.[9][10][11] He has said that those opposing PrEP's introduction to the NHS were being homophobic,[10] and has accused the UK government of "putting more hurdles in the way of the rollout of PrEP."[11]

McDonald retained his seat in the 2017 snap general election with a decreased majority.[12]

In July 2017 McDonald introduced a Private Members' Bill to ban unpaid trial shifts for workers.[13][14] He called the practice "exploitation" for young job-seekers, and his Bill gained the support of the Scottish Trades Union Congress and National Union of Students among others.[15][16] In March 2018 the Bill was talked out of the Commons meaning it could not be voted on.[17][18] A year on from when he first introduced the Bill, he vowed to "keep fighting" to end unpaid trial work.[19]

On 11 April 2018, as the SNP's Defence Spokesperson, McDonald warned Prime Minister Theresa May over launching airstrikes on Syria (in response to the Assad regime's chemical attack on civilians) without first having the airstrikes approved by a parliamentary vote.[20] He said the SNP would support such airstrikes if they were part of a wider plan to bring an end to the war.[21][22] The UK launched airstrikes on 14 April without a parliamentary vote, which McDonald condemned as "gesture bombing".[23][24]

Personal life[edit]

McDonald is openly gay and, on 19 May 2015, gathered with other LGBT SNP MPs, including his near-namesake Stuart McDonald, to campaign for a "Yes" vote in the Irish referendum on same-sex marriage, being held three days later.[25]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Transport Committee — membership". House of Commons. 8 July 2015. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
  2. ^ "Scottish National Party Spokespersons". UK Parliament. Retrieved 16 August 2018.
  3. ^ "Analysis: SNP bucks trend for privately educated MPs". David Leask. The Herald. 1 June 2015. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
  4. ^ Paterson, Stewart (7 November 2014). "General election: battle for Glasgow". Evening Times. Newsquest. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
  5. ^ a b "Glasgow South Parliamentary constituency". BBC Election 2015. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
  6. ^ "Stewart McDonald is within a whisker of triumph in Parliamentary Beard of the Year contest". The National. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  7. ^ a b Perraudin, Frances (11 December 2015). "Jeremy Corbyn wins parliamentary beard of the year by a whisker". the Guardian. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  8. ^ Bloom, Dan (10 December 2015). "Jeremy Corbyn 'has won Beard of the Year by a whisker' after a last-minute surge". mirror. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  9. ^ "MPs Warn Delay In HIV Prevention Drug Will Lead To Death Of Hundreds". BuzzFeed. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
  10. ^ a b "There's a whiff of homophobia surrounding the PrEP debate". politics.co.uk. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
  11. ^ a b "PrEP: The Right Thing To Do And A Reminder Of Just How Wrong We Were". HuffPost UK. 11 April 2017. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
  12. ^ "Glasgow South parliamentary constituency - Election 2017". BBC News. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  13. ^ "Unpaid Trial Shifts: Young People Working 40 Hours For Free In Desperate Bids To Find Jobs". HuffPost UK. 9 October 2017. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  14. ^ "MP launches bid to outlaw 'unscrupulous' unpaid work trials". The Independent. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  15. ^ "Campaign to end unpaid 'trial shifts'". BBC News. 24 December 2017. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  16. ^ "Stewart McDonald introduces private members' bill to ban unpaid trial shifts". Holyrood Magazine. 17 July 2017. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  17. ^ "MP's bid to ban unpaid trial shifts fails". BBC News. 16 March 2018. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  18. ^ "MP vows to fight on after Bill banning unpaid trial shifts is talked out". The National. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  19. ^ McDonald, Stewart (19 July 2018). "SNP MP vows to keep fighting against exploitative unpaid trial shifts". dailyrecord. Retrieved 15 August 2018.
  20. ^ "SNP call for Commons vote on UK role in Syria". Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  21. ^ "SNP MP warns May over launching strikes on Syria". Evening Times. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  22. ^ Macdonell, Hamish (12 April 2018). "SNP urges May to rethink Syria raids". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  23. ^ PoliticsHome.com (14 April 2018). "SNP accuse Theresa May of 'gesture bombing' over Syria military action". PoliticsHome.com. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  24. ^ Cullen, Ellie (14 April 2018). "Scots politicans blast Theresa May as Britain launches air strikes on Syria". dailyrecord. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  25. ^ ""The Gayest Group in Westminster" is urging Ireland to vote Yes to same-sex marriage". BuzzFeed. 19 May 2015. Retrieved 12 December 2015.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Tom Harris
Member of Parliament
for Glasgow South

2015–present
Incumbent