Tory minister accuses Nicola Sturgeon of getting priorities wrong
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Addressing Scottish politicians yesterday, Ms Sturgeon said: “As we emerge from the pandemic, choices fall to be made that will shape our economy and our society for decades to come. Which parliament, Westminster or Hollyrood, should make these choices?”
She added: “We intend to offer the choice.
“We will do so only when the Covid crisis has passed, but our aim, Covid-permitting, is that it will be in the first half of this parliament, before the end of 2023.
“Crucially, we will ensure that the choice, when it does come, is a fully-informed one.
“To that end, I can confirm that the Scottish government will now restart work on the detailed prospectus that will guide the decision.
“The case for independence is a strong one – we will present it openly, frankly, and with confidence and ambition.”
Shortly after her speech, Boris Johnson invited the devolved ministers to an in-person summit next week to discuss Covid recovery.
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When the last Scottish referendum happened in 2014, UK citizens were told that it was a ‘once in a lifetime’ vote.
But ever since the Scottish voted to remain part of the UK, the SNP have been fighting for another referendum.
In 2014, 55.30 percent of votes went in favour of staying in the UK, and 44.70 percent of voters wanted Scotland to become an independent country.
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A YouGov survey of Scottish adults carried out in May 2021 suggests that since the pandemic, more Scottish people want to remain part of the UK.
Social commentators have argued that the impressive roll-out of the furlough scheme as well as the vaccine programme may have re-built Scottish public confidence in Westminster.
Polling data has also shown that 57 percent percent of Britons believe Scotland would be financially worse off if it seperated from the UK, compared to just 12 percent who said it would be better off.
In response to a question asking British adults how they would describe the relationship between Scotland and England now compared to five years ago, 53 percent said it is weaker, compared to only four percent who said it is stronger.
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At the beginning of August, Michael Gove said that it is not the right “moment” for a Scottish independence referendum and that there will not be one until “there is clearly a settled will in favour of a referendum” amongst the Great British public.
But a YouGov poll of Britons earlier this year suggested that 46 percent of the UK’s non-Scottish public oppose the idea of a Scottish referendum, while 29 percent said they think there should be one, and 25 percent of people did not have an opinion on the matter.
Labour supporters were more likely to be in support of a Scottish referendum than Tories, and most Labour supporters also say that the Government should look to increase the powers that Scottish parliament has.
People over the age of 65 are most likely to oppose Scottish independence, with 65 percent of voters saying it’s a bad idea, compared to just 22 percent of 18-24-year-old voters.
What do you think? Should the Prime Minister continue to dig his heels in, or should he let approve the vote to get it over and done with? Let us know in the comment section and by voting in the poll.
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