Friday, 27 Nov 2020

Boris Johnson to face brutal challenge to keep Scotland in UK as Indyref2 support grows

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Boris Johnson must ensure focus is brought back to the importance of the union to keep Scotland into the UK after the division of Brexit, Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross warned. Mr Ross issued the warning after the fourth survey in a row showing support for a second independence referendum reaching past 50 percent. The Scottish Tories leader told STV: “Last month I said independence was not inevitable, I truly believe that is the case.

“The bonds that we share across our four nations and between the people and the communities that make up our country are deeper and more essential now than they’ve ever been.

“But you can’t ignore the way that Brexit, and how it’s been delivered, has undermined the perception that there are common, shared values that unite us.

“We can continue to talk in facts about the economic importance of the UK, or the democratic mandate which meant that we had to leave the EU. And about practical changes to the way that we govern our country to empower devolved administrations and increase the visibility of the UK Government.

“These are important but the key driving force behind the independence movement right now is the perception that our values are no longer shared.”

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Mr Ross continued: “After the Brexit process and the handling of the pandemic, they no longer see our union as underpinned by shared values as special.

“And the challenge to this UK Government, if it is serious about strengthening our union, then it must bring our country together.

“Let the healing begin. Do not govern solely for the majority but for everyone across the nation.”

Pollster Survation interviewed 1,071 Scots aged 16 and over and found 54 percent of respondents would vote in favour of Scotland quitting the UK.

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With the inclusion on undecided voters, the backing dropped to 46 percent, 8 points ahead of the No vote, which stopped at 38 percent.

Women were found to be more in favour of independence at 48 percent compared to men at 46 percent, with 16-34-year-olds supporting independence at 77 percent.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon welcomed the results of the polls but insisted votes will be the only thing that matters to achieve independence.

Writing on Twitter, Ms Sturgeon said: “More very strong polling for independence and the SNP.

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“But as we see playing out in real-time in USA, it’s votes that count, not polls. Let’s stay focussed on leading Scotland well through these tough times.”

Earlier this year, Ms Sturgeon also confirmed the SNP will be publishing its plans for independence ahead of the Scottish Elections scheduled for May 2021.

The First Minister had requested permission to hold a new referendum following the General Election in December but was refused by Boris Johnson.

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