Jackson Carlaw hoping Scottish Tories can win 'between six and a dozen' seats

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Scottish Conservative Party conference - Edinburgh

The Scottish Tory deputy leader said it would be "great" if his party could win between six and 12 Scottish seats in the General Election.

Jackson Carlaw said there has been a "change in atmosphere" in Scottish politics as he insisted there are several seats where there is a "very strong prospect" of a Conservative victory.

If the Conservatives could win 12 Scottish constituencies on June 8, that would be the party's best result in a Westminster election north of the border for more than three decades.

The Tories were wiped out in Scotland 20 years ago, losing all their seats when Tony Blair swept to power. From 2001 onwards, they have had just one Scottish MP.

But a surge in support under Scottish leader Ruth Davidson saw the party overtake Labour in the 2016 Holyrood elections, coming second with a record number of 31 MSPs.

Mr Carlaw, speaking on the Kaye Adams programme on BBC Radio Scotland, said: "Opinion pollsters are talking about somewhere between six and a dozen and it would be great if we could achieve that.

"I think there has been a considerable change since 2015 and 2016 in public opinion and therefore I think there is an appetite now to see a more robust opposition in Scotland.

"So I do think that in a number of seats across Scotland there is a very strong prospect of the Scottish Conservatives winning."

The 2015 general election, where the SNP swept the board winning 56 of the 59 Scottish seats, resulted in an "overwhelming" number of nationalist MPs at Westminster, Mr Carlaw said.

But he said the Conservatives were now the "principle party of opposition" at Holyrood, adding that the SNP Scottish Government was losing votes there "regularly".

Mr Carlaw said: "I don't think it's an overnight sweep, but I do think people are now much more questioning of the domestic record of the Scottish Government and are looking for people to actually be more upfront and successful in opposing them."