Douglas Ross is facing calls to step down as MP for Moray ahead of the Scottish Parliament election in May.
The SNP’s Moray MSP, Richard Lochhead, laid down the challenge, saying the Scottish Conservative party leader would be juggling too many jobs, including his part-time employment as a football linesman.
Mr Lochhead also claimed it would save the extra expense of having to hold a separate by-election at a later date.
Mr Ross, who represents Moray as an MP, is top of the Conservatives’ regional list for Highlands and Islands as his potential route into the Scottish Parliament.
But it’s understood he has no intention of making way before the vote on May 6.
A Conservative spokesman said the attack on Mr Ross was a “distraction” from the SNP’s own problems.
‘Desperate distraction tactics’
The spokesman said: “Voters have become wise to the desperate distraction tactics of Nicola Sturgeon’s sleaze-infested SNP while the Scottish Conservatives focus on blocking another damaging referendum and rebuilding after the pandemic.”
At the last Westminster election, in 2019, Mr Ross beat the SNP challenger by 513 votes.
Mr Lochhead said: “He can’t possibly be in both Holyrood and Westminster at the same time and he is already notorious for struggling to balance all his current responsibilities as an SFA linesman, MP and party leader. Now he wants to add MSP to the list of jobs.
“Many of his constituents are struggling and, as the country looks to recover from the pandemic, Douglas Ross needs to put his full focus into being either an MSP or an MP. The days of dual mandates should be consigned to history.”