SNP warns Boris will ‘lose control’ if PM rejects Nicola Sturgeon’s referendum demands

IndyRef2: Angus Robertson warns against ‘ignoring’ vote

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The SNP have warned that Boris Johnson’s refusal to hold an independence referendum will spiral into “something he can’t control”. The former SNP leader at Westminster Angus Robertson issued the threat during an interview with BBC Newnsight’s political editor Nicholas Watt, Mr Robertson, who is campaigning to regain his SNP seat in Edinburgh, suggested that “London really is going to have to accede” to Nicola Sturgeon’s demands.

Mr Robertson, who served as the SNP’s deputy leader between 2016 and 2018, told Newsnight that if the Prime Minister refuses to agree to a referendum in the event of a nationalist majority at Holyrood, he would turn a debate about independence into one on democracy.

He explained: “If the Government in London decides that it is going to ignore the democratic wishes of people in Scotland, that is extremely serious.

“It poses a bigger problem for Boris Johnson and the Tories because what at the present time is an independence question moves into becoming a democracy question.

“And that is something London won’t be able to control.”

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He continued: “If the people vote for a parliament that wishes for there to be an independence referendum, London really is going to have to accede to that.

“Because if they don’t, the problem for them is going to get a lot worse.”

The BBC’s Nicholas Watt also suggested that Mr Johnson’s refusal to grant a referendum could “rebound on him”.

Despite this, a new poll shows dwindling support for independence, with backing for a break up of the UK at its lowest level for almost 18 months.

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The new poll, by Savanta ComRes for The Scotsman, has support for Yes drop to its lowest level since before the 2019 general election.

According to the polling, which interviewed 1,001 Scottish adults between April 23 and 27, just 42 percent of voters would vote Yes, while 49 percent of Scots backing No.

If the undecided were excluded and a second independence referendum was held tomorrow, No would win the referendum with a similar margin to the previous vote in 2014.

This would see 54 percent of the vote back No compared to 46 percent for Yes.


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The new polling also suggested that the SNP will lose two seats when compared with 2016 and end up four short of a majority.

Earlier this week, the SNP’s plans for an independent Scotland descended into further confusion when the party’s own foreign affairs spokesman backed joining the euro.

Alyn Smith told an Italian newspaper that a separate Scotland would be willing to join the single currency as “we would want to participate in economic and monetary union”.

Murdo Fraser, the Scottish Tory finance spokesman, responded to this: “This is stunningly out of touch.

“First the SNP would divide us with another independence referendum and then they would have us ditch our internationally-respected currency.”

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