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Stuart McDonald (Scottish politician)

Stuart Campbell McDonald (born 2 May 1978) is a Scottish National Party politician. He is a parliamentary candidate for the Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East constituency.[1] He is the SNP Spokesperson on Immigration, Asylum and Border Control and a member of the House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee.

Stuart McDonald
Official portrait of Stuart C. McDonald crop 2.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East
In office
8 May 2015 – 6 November 2019
Preceded byGregg McClymont
Succeeded byElection in progress
Personal details
Stuart Campbell McDonald

(1978-05-02) 2 May 1978 (age 41)
Glasgow, Scotland
Political partyScottish National Party
Alma materUniversity of Edinburgh

He was first elected in May 2015, unseating incumbent Labour MP and Shadow Pensions Minister, Gregg McClymont. McDonald is the first SNP MP to represent Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East, which covers parts of the North Lanarkshire and East Dunbartonshire council areas.

Early life and career before politicsEdit

Raised in Milton of Campsie, McDonald attended Kilsyth Academy between 1990 and 1996. He studied at the University of Edinburgh between 1996 and 2001, where he graduated from with a 2:1 Bachelor of Law (Hons), and a Diploma in Legal Practice. During his time at the University of Edinburgh, McDonald studied European and Comparative Law while on an ERASMUS year at the University of Leuven, between 1997 and 1998.[2][3]

After graduating from university, McDonald worked as a Legal Trainee with Simpson and Marwick Solicitors, between October 2001 and July 2003, before he went to work for NHS Scotland's Central Legal Office, as a Solicitor – a position he held between July 2003 and November 2005.[4] In November 2005, McDonald began working for the Immigration Advisory Service (IAS), as a Human Rights Solicitor – a job he held until November 2009, when he became a Senior Researcher at the Scottish Parliament.

He left his position at the Scottish Parliament in February 2013, to become a Senior Researcher for the pro-independence Scottish independence referendum campaign Yes Scotland, a position he held until the independence referendum on 18 September 2014.[5] Immediately prior to his election, McDonald worked as a Parliamentary and Public Affairs Officer for the Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights, a Glasgow-based charity.[6]

Member of Parliament (2015–present)Edit

McDonald was officially selected unopposed as the SNP candidate, in December 2014, for the constituency which he has described as his "home patch".[7][8][9] He went on to win Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East in the 2015 UK Parliamentary Election with 59.9% of the vote, and a majority of 14,752.[10][11]

Following his election, McDonald became the SNP's Spokesperson on Immigration, Asylum and Border Control, building on his previous experience as an immigration lawyer.[12]

McDonald is gay and, on 19 May 2015, gathered with other LGBT SNP MPs, including his near-namesake Stewart McDonald, to campaign for a Yes vote in the Irish referendum on same-sex marriage, being held 3 days later.[13]


  1. ^ "List of Members returned to Parliament at the General Election 2015 Scotland". The Edinburgh Gazette. 15 May 2015. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  2. ^ 'About Me' section of Stuart McDonald's official Facebook page
  3. ^ Stuart McDonald's CV from Democracy Club
  4. ^ "Who's Who". 2015. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.u283936. Retrieved 27 January 2019. |chapter= ignored (help)
  5. ^ Coman, Julian (10 November 2013). "Could an independent Scotland be just what northern England needs?". The Observer. Retrieved 10 May 2015.
  6. ^ CRER Scotland official Twitter page
  7. ^ "SNP choose candidate for Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East ward at UK general election". Kirkintilloch Herald. Johnston Press. 10 December 2014. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  8. ^ Campbell, Scott (10 December 2014). "SNP announce Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East candidate". Cumbernauld Media. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  9. ^ Stuart McDonald reacts to the Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East result via his official Facebook page
  10. ^ 2015 General Election results from North Lanarkshire Council website
  11. ^ "Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East results". BBC News Online. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  12. ^ "2015 SNP confirms group roles". SNP Press Office. 20 May 2015. Archived from the original on 21 May 2015. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
  13. ^ ""The Gayest Group in Westminster" is urging Ireland to vote Yes to same-sex marriage". BuzzFeed. 19 May 2015. Retrieved 12 December 2015.

External linksEdit