were “more in tune with me” and started to lend them her vote.
After attending a pre- election debate in 2011, she joined the party on the eve of their outright Scottish election victory.
Since then, her r ise has been quick through the ranks. She was a candidate for Rutherglen South in the 2013, and held a number of roles in the local branch and regional liaison committees.
She was initially reluctant to take on the candidacy for Rutherglen and Hamilton West, but after being nominated, she saw off the challenge from Councillor Jim McGuigan.
Margaret admits some potential candidates may have been put off by the prospect of taking on a huge Labour majority
“Our area differed from other constituencies,” she says. “A lot of them had quite a lot of candidates going forward for Westminster, some had as many as eight or nine.
“It was just me and one of the local councillors, Jim McGuigan. I don’t know whether that was because everyone thought it was going to be such a difficult one to win because it was such a Labour stronghold. Maybe that didn’t attract that many people putting themselves forward for the area.” While the election result stunned many, Margaret reckons it merely reflected what she was hearing on the doorstep: “People ask if it was it a surprise on the night, looking back, no it wasn’t because it tied in exactly with the results we were getting when we went out to canvass. “You have good days and bad days when you go out campaigning. What we were finding was some areas we were going into and it was kind of a 50-50 split, but again there were some areas where you were way ahead.
“Sometimes you are a bit concerned that people are maybe not telling you the truth on the doorstep, but it didn’t feel like that this time. It felt like you were genuinely getting a true answer from people.
“We were getting, a lot of the time, people were telling us they used to be Labour voters and were never going to vote for them again.
“They were listening to our message that we were going to be the party that had a strong voice at Westminster for Scotland, we were going to speak up for Scotland.”
Moving forward, Margaret is keen to get stuck into her role as the SNP spokesperson for the Scotland Office as well as set up her constituency office.
Before she goes, I ask if she’ll ever see Scotland gain independence, and her answer in unequivocal.
But she doesn’t rule out a more federalised UK as a forerunner to that.
“Oh yes, I think so. I would like to see that ( Scotland becoming independent).
“I think it’s quite fascinating to listen to some of the MP’s from northern England as well who would like more of a say and they’re talking about these micro-mayors and so, yeah, I can see that (a more federal system).
“If Scotland does get more powers through more devolution, maybe Wales as well, then northern England will want the same and maybe we will see that.
“Obviously the Westminster establishment will be fighting against that, they will want to keep all the power centralised in London, but I don’t think that will be healthy in the long run.
“I think we will see changes not just in Scotland but the rest of the UK as well.”