New poll a setback for Alistair Darling, leader of the 'no' campaign
Scottish independence: Setback for ‘no’ campaign as poll shows EU support much stronger in Scotland than UK
by Jo Edwards
A new poll has found that support for EU membership is far stronger in Scotland than the UK as a whole. The findings represent a major setback for the Better Together campaign which backs a ‘no’ vote in Scotland’s independence referendum.
The Angus Reid poll shows Scotland’s support for remaining in the EU stands at 45 percent, nearly twice as many than those who wish to leave. This compares starkly with the UK as a whole where support and opposition is level pegging at 34 percent.
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Previously the ‘no’ to independence campaign Better Together, led by former Labour Chancellor Alistair Darling, raised fears that an independent Scotland would struggle to gain membership of the EU, arguing that remaining in the UK ensured ongoing EU membership.
However with Prime Minister David Cameron now promising the British public an in-out referendum on the EU, it now appears that remaining inside the Union could lead to Scotland being forcibly exited from the EU against its wishes because of the numerical superiority of the English electorate.
Interestingly, nearly 68 percent of voters in Scotland say that the EU referendum is either “definitely” or “probably” a distraction from the economic crisis.
David Cameron scored only 14 percent on the question of the most trusted leader on Europe, with this figure still managing to top Ed Miliband at 13 percent, and Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage with a lowly 6 percent.
The poll also confirmed an SNP lead over Labour in Scotland by 39 percent to 35 percent for a Westminster general election.
The SNP’s Westminster Leader Angus Robertson said: “This poll highlights the difference in how we view Europe in Scotland. Scotland is in favour of being in the EU on a scale of two-to-one; meanwhile across the UK as a whole, voters are evenly split on the matter
“David Cameron’s fundamentally confused plan for a referendum to exit the EU is bombing in Scotland – as this latest poll shows.
“The figures also show an overwhelming rejection of the Westminster leaders from the people of Scotland, which will come as a blow to the anti-independence Tory-Labour pact...The referendum on Europe is unpopular in Scotland with the vast majority of people seeing it as nothing more than a distraction”.
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