In Stewartfield last week a woman told me she would read all the political party manifestos before deciding who to vote for.
I have to confess that it’s not a typical response from a voter, but it’s a wise one.
Because, despite all the cynicism that surrounds politics, manifestos are crucial.
That’s because when a party is elected to Government the Manifesto becomes its agreement with the people.
It is the justification for making decisions and it forms the content of the Queen’s Speech, which sets out the legislative programme.
I attended Scottish Labour’s manifesto launch last Friday in Glasgow.
As a party that believes passionately about the redistribution of wealth across the whole of the United Kingdom, our manifesto weaves together our priorities for Scotland and the rest of our country.
I am proud because many of the commitments we have made were generated in East Kilbride.
The top three issues raised with me in the last five years, housing, jobs for our young people and support for our NHS, are all in there.
We’ll build 100,000 new homes in Scotland and we’ll get our fair share of those new homes to eradicate the 6000-strong waiting list in the constituency.
New construction jobs and apprenticeships will be created, but we will go further.
We’ll guarantee a job, apprenticeship or training for young people. We’ll introduce a £1600 future fund for 18 and 19 year olds who are not at college, university or in an apprenticeship, to fund training or help start a new business.
We’ll do all this while keeping university tuition free and introducing a bursary for poorer students.
We’ll support our NHS with 1000 new nurses, 500 doctors and a £100 million resilience fund for A&E services.
This is on top of our commitments to abolish exploitative zero-hour contracts, raise the minimum wage to at least £8 an hour and rid our country of food banks and the Bedroom Tax.
We will maintain the Barnett formula because Full Fiscal Autonomy would be a disaster for our country; it would mean a break-up of the state pension and much, much more.
If you want to read all of our manifesto commitments go to www.scottishlabour.org.uk.
But let me finish on this. Everyone of our commitments is costed and paid for.
We’ve set out how we will increase taxes to pay for them because social justice can’t be delivered without money.
But for those doubters still out there, consider this: in 1945 the first majority Labour Government was elected.
In much tougher economic times than we face today it built new homes, created the welfare state and passed the 1946 New Towns Act which created East Kilbride.
However, the birth of the National Health Service in July 1948 remains Labour's greatest monument.
It was achieved despite two years of bitter resistance by the medical establishment, with consultants threatening strike action and the BMA warning about bureaucracy and expense.
They were wrong. And it would be wrong to doubt us again.
In Stewartfield last week a woman told me she would read all the political party manifestos before deciding who to vote for. I have to confess that it’s not a...