Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale is in a relationship with a Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP) member of the Scottish Parliament.
Ms Dugdale has been dating Jenny Gilruth for about four months.
Gilruth is the Scottish parliament representative for the rival Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP).
The couple released a joint statement saying:
‘We don’t consider this to be ‘news’ – but we appreciate others might. So we want to go about our daily lives normally.
‘We would like to thank our friends, family, and colleagues for their kindness over the past few months and for their love and support.
‘Politely we’d ask that our privacy is respected because while we are both politicians, we are also human beings – in a new relationship, which we cherish.
The Scotsman reports the couple first got to know each other in a cross party trip to the United States.
Responding to the statement Scotland’s First Minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon posted a heart warming message about love:
Gilruth also posted to Twitter to thank people for their messages.
In cute social media relationship goals, Dugdale of course – retweeted.
Scottish Labour leader’s humble coming out
The leader of the Scottish Labour party came out in a quiet, but impactful way in April 2016.
In an interview with journalist Mary Riddel for the Fabian society she said:
‘I have a female partner… I don’t talk about it very much because I don’t feel I need to.’
Dugdale became the leader of the Scottish Labour party after the 2010 general election.
Labour lost a lot of seats to the SNP in 2010, inspiring the resignation of then leader, Jim Murphy.
In the most recent UK snap election called in 2017, the narrative of the campaign was looking at whether there should be a second Scottish Independence referendum known as ‘#indyref2’. Scotland voted to remain as part of the UK in 2014.
Dugdale lead Labour to make gains in Scotland from one MP, to seven.
This was part of a wider trend with the SNP losing seats to Labour, the Conservatives, and the Liberal Democrats who campaigned on a ‘no #indyref2’ narrative.
Author: Jamie Wareham