A FORGOTTEN generation of Scots frozen out of politics will prove the secret weapon that sweeps Scotland to independence in the referendum, Alex Salmond has claimed.
It came as a new poll suggests the race for Scotland’s future is hanging in the balance, with the Yes camp a four-point swing away from victory.
The first survey since Mr Salmond’s victory over the Better Together leader Alistair Darling in Monday’s live television debate found that support for a Yes vote has jumped 4.4 per cent and now stands at 47 per cent.
The No camp is on 53 per cent, according to the Survation poll.
The First Minister suggested more than one million Scots who do not normally vote are set to turn out and back independence on 18 September.
“Things are moving in the right direction and, in particular, I think the people who have been effectively excluded from the political process in the past are going to vote Yes in resounding numbers,” the SNP leader said. “These are people who haven’t spoken yet politically and when they speak, it will make the Hampden roar look like nothing – and it will leave David Cameron quaking in his boots.”
Fewer than two million Scots – barely half the electorate – voted in the last Holyrood election which gave the SNP its historic majority.
However, one million more are expected to cast their ballots this time, with a turnout of more than 80 per cent expected.
In Edinburgh alone, more than 90 per cent of eligible voters have registered.
A recent survey by the pro-Yes Radical Independence Campaign of 18,000 Scots living in housing estates found two-thirds are backing a Yes vote.
Mr Salmond said on a visit to western Edinburgh that he is “confident how Wester Hailes and Sighthill are going to vote” in the referendum.
But the Yes campaign remains the underdog, according the First Minister.
“It’s a close race, we’re still behind,” he added. “We’ve got work to do over the next few weeks to convince our fellow citizens that a Yes vote is the right thing to do.”
Better Together campaign chief Blair McDougall claimed the latest survey showed that the majority of Scots wanted to stay in the Union.
“It’s clear that despite all the heat generated by the TV debates, our lead remains exactly the same as it was. The closer we get to the vote, people are thinking seriously about the choice we face.
“Postal votes are already being filled in, yet Scots have no idea what currency Scots would use. It’s a risk we just don’t have to take.”