AS CONSTITUENTS, you want to know that your priorities are also my priorities: the cost of living, tackling poverty, supporting the NHS, fair wages, warm, affordable housing, and addressing the climate crisis.

I serve in Government to achieve these goals: working towards what can benefit you is my day job.

Recently, I visited local businesses Edinburgh Beer Factory (based in West Barns) and Frontier Robotics, encouraged to see both one of the planet’s oldest industries, as well as cutting-edge science and technology, contributing to the county’s prosperity.

Queen Margaret University’s Innovation Hub will deploy flexible resources to deliver knowledge-sharing opportunities and facilities appropriate for high-growth, small to medium enterprises.

This 21st-century approach is a beacon for the county and a pointer to what Scotland’s innovators could be bringing to the EU. Whether or not that happens is up to you.

UK and local producers and growers, battered by Brexit, face huge challenges. Pursuing trade deals with far-distant countries (Australia, New Zealand, Canada), Westminster was apparently surprised that Canada wanted a deal advantageous to Canadian farmers, not only to the UK.

Just across the North Sea is the EU, one of the world’s most outward-facing economies, and its largest single market; no fantasy trade deals required there, yet recklessly, stupidly, almost casually, Westminster let that slip from its grasp.

The UK’s GDP in late 2023 was only 1.4 per cent above its pre-pandemic level, while the Eurozone GDP is three per cent higher. Scotland is missing out on a boost to growth, a surge in exports and the free movement of skilled workers.

In the forthcoming General Election, you will have the chance to undo Brexit’s calamitous damage by launching a voter-led process of taking Scotland back into the EU as an independent country.

Candidate Iain Whyte is, like me, a local man, East Lothian born and bred.

Whether you have lived here all your life – as Iain and I have – you have been here for some years or moved here more recently to build a new life, you will want to see the county thrive.

Iain wasn’t born when the UK joined the EU; he was still at school when Labour’s Douglas Alexander voted for an illegal war in Iraq. Iain’s not the past: he’s your voice for Scotland’s European future.