Scotland: Second referendum would be ‘illegal’ says Ross
Scottish Conservatives leader Douglas Ross argued that Nicola Sturgeon’s focus on independence has shifted the focus away from issues the SNP have failed to address. Mr Ross claimed that despite the perception of Scotland having handled the pandemic well, the SNP has not done anything that is drastically unique. The Scottish Conservatives leader also slammed plans to hold a Scottish referendum without the approval of Westminster calling it “illegal”.
Speaking to Channel 4, Mr Ross said: “I’ll take no part in an illegal referendum because the decision made in 2014, which both sides said they would accept and agree to, was to remain part of the UK.
“It is a distraction, a distraction from their 14 years of power here in Scotland.
“Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP always go back to independence because their own record here in Scotland is not one they can be proud of.”
Channel 4 reporter Fatima Manji then put to Mr Ross: “A lot of people of Scotland believe, right or wrongly, that Nicola Sturgeon has handled the pandemic well.”
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The Tory MP replied: “I think there is a perception issue here in Scotland that somehow Nicola Sturgeon has handled this different from the UK government.
“Because anyone looking at this impartially would really struggle to see where the differences have been.
“So Nicola sturgeon may have communicated in a different way but the approach here in Scotland has been roughly the same as across the UK.
Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced the SNP would hold an advisory independence referendum if they won the Scottish Parliamentary elections on May 6.
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Ms Sturgeon told the Andrew Marr show last Sunday: “I want to have a legal referendum, that’s what I’m going to seek the authority of the Scottish people for in May.
“And if they give me that authority that’s what I intend to do, to have a legal referendum to give people the right to choose.
“That’s democracy. It’s not about what I want or what Boris Johnson wants.”
While Scottish Conservatives have slammed the move, prospective Scottish Labour leaders have also criticised the SNP for pursuing independence.
Scottish Labour leader hopeful Anas Sarwar said: “I think the challenge there is I don’t think its right for Scottish politicians, especially the Scottish Labour party, to try and find a position that’s about finding a political fix.
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“Instead, I think we should have political leaders that tell the truth, that say what they truly believe and try and persuade the public about why they believe that and try to take them with them.
“I don’t believe an independence referendum in the coming years is the right thing for us to do.”
Fellow Scottish Labour Leader hopeful Monica Lennon also blasted the SNP for their failures tackling the pandemic.
She said: “We have seen up close during this pandemic what more than a decade of SNP rule has done to Scotland.
“Yes there has been some good stuff and some good policies but we’re in a pandemic with our public services on their knees, frontline workers are already burnt out and underpaid.”
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