Last day of campaigning in Glasgow North East

By staff

Today marks the last day of campaigning in Glasgow North East before voters go to the polls.

Labour candidate Willie Bain is thought to have a narrow lead over his main opponent, Scottish national party (SNP) candidate David Kerr.

Mr Kerr, a former BBC journalist, faced criticism after activists pointed out his leaflets described him as “Dennistoun-born”.$1339778.htm

During his unsuccessful campaign in Falkrik West in 2000, he described himself as being born near Cumbernauld, opponents claimed.

Mr Bain, however, received support form lifelong Labour supporter Sir Alex Ferguson this week, after the Manchester United manager contributed to a Labour leaflet.

“Glasgow is my home city and every time I come back I see the changes for the better since 1997,” he wrote.$1339756.htm

“It’s a world away from when I was a young apprentice. But some things stay the same. Like the need for a strong local voice to speak for the city.”

The constituency has been graced by the presence of several big hitters in recent days, with Alistair Darling, chancellor, and Alan Johnson, home secretary, attending yesterday.

Nick Clegg, Liberal Democrat leader, will also be visiting today. David Cameron, Conservative leader, has previously made the trip.

The prime minister himself attended on Friday. His wife, Sarah, who is increasingly considered a prize electoral asset by Labour HQ, has paid several visits.

The visit was a marked change to previous approaches by the prime minister, who resisted calls to visit other by-election campaigns earlier in his administration.

Labour strategists are placing a great deal of importance on the by-election, especially since it will probably be the last before the general election.

The by-election was triggered after Speaker Michael Martin, now Lord Martin, stepped down from his post, and his position as an MP, in the wake of the expenses scandal.