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Results & Constituencies
 
 Airdrie & Shotts
Other Labour hold
Name Party Votes % +/- %
Helen Liddell Labour 18,478 58.2 -3.6
Alison Lindsay SNP 6,138 19.3 -5.1
John Love Liberal Democrat 2,376 7.5 +3.3
Gordon McIntosh Conservative 1,960 6.2 -2.7
Mary Dempsey Scottish Unionist 1,439 4.5  
Kenny McGuigan Scottish Socialist 1,171 3.7  
Chris Herriot Socialist Labour 174 0.5  
Majority 12,340 38.9
Turnout 31,736 54.4 -17.0
Swing
Against 1997 General Election 0.7% from SNP to Labour
Lab-Con (against 1997) 0.4% from Labour to Conservative
Against 1999 devolution poll 5.9% from SNP to Labour

Description
Situated near to the eastern outskirts of Glasgow, Airdrie and Shotts is the successor seat to John Smith's old Monklands East fortress. The late Labour leader had a 15,712 majority in 1992, but following his death in 1994 the Labour candidate, Helen Liddell, won by only 1,640 votes over the SNP in a bitter by-election contest.

Airdrie is by far the largest centre of population and, like Shotts, is an industrial town suffering from a decline in traditional industries such as engineering, coal and iron and steel. Shotts is home to one of Scotland's main prisons.

One element which featured at the 1994 by-election was a perception that Airdrie was broadly Protestant - while neighbouring Coatbridge was broadly Catholic. It was claimed - and disputed - that Monklands Council favoured Catholic Coatbridge over Protestant Airdrie.

The SNP’s vote receded from its by-election levels at the 1997 General Election, giving Helen Liddell a majority of 15, 412 (37.4%). Labour remained strong at the 1999 Scottish Parliament elections, which saw Karen Whitefield win the seat with a majority of 8,985 (27.05%).

Past Results

1997 General Election
 Airdrie & Shotts
Labour hold
Name Party Votes %
Helen Liddell Labour 25,460 61.8
Keith Robertson SNP 10,048 24.4
Nicholas Brook Conservative 3,660 8.9
Richard Wolseley Liberal Democrat 1,719 4.2
Crawford Semple Referendum 294 0.7
Majority 15,412 37.4
Turnout 41,181 71.4
1999 Scottish Parliamentary Election
 Airdrie & Shotts
Labour win
Name Party Votes %
Karen Whitefield Labour 18,338 55.2
Gil Paterson SNP 9,353 28.2
Patrick Ross-Taylor Conservative 3,177 9.6
David Miller Liberal Democrat 2,345 7.1
Majority 8,985 27.0
Turnout 33,213 56.3
 
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