Scottish independence: McLeish ‘won’t vote Yes’

Henry McLeish has described reports he will vote 'Yes' as "utter rubbish". Picture: PA
Henry McLeish has described reports he will vote 'Yes' as "utter rubbish". Picture: PA
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FORMER Labour first minister Henry McLeish has dismissed Better Together claims that he is preparing to endorse a Yes vote in the independence referendum as “absolute rubbish”.

Better Together campaign director Blair McDougall tweeted: “Just heard from impeccable source that Henry McLeish endorsing Yes on Monday. Hardly a surprise but he’s entitled to his view.”

Mr McLeish said: “The two words you are looking for are ‘absolute rubbish’.

“I’ve no idea what they are up to, what they are doing, but I can tell you very categorically there is no truth whatsoever, it’s absolute rubbish.”

Mr McLeish, who has been a vocal critic of Better Together’s “negative” campaign but has remained a declared No voter, says he has “no idea” why Mr McDougall would view a defection to Yes as “hardly a surprise”.

“I’ve no idea why he is making these comments,” he said.

“Indeed, if you listen to the podcast of the BBC Referendum programme today, I say I’m voting No.”

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Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland’s The Big Debate, Mr McLeish said: “I’m a No voter, but I have been honest enough on public platforms and in a new book that voting No has become difficult.

“The debate is very tribal, the debate is highly partisan.”

He added: “If you vote Yes you get independence, if you vote No there’s a bit of a hesitation as to what you get when Westminster and the new government meet in 2015.”