SHADOW foreign secretary Douglas Alexander appeared to rule out a deal with the SNP that would see a Labour government scrap Trident in exchange for nationalist votes in the Commons, if Ed Miliband fails to win outright in May.
Mr Alexander, the chair of UK Labour’s General Election strategy, said that as “the prospective foreign secretary” he would not be about “trading away” the government’s “responsibility” to keep the UK safe.
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He said that Labour’s position on the Trident nuclear missiles at Faslane was “clear” and that it has not changed, in a statement that pours cold water over suggestions from Nicola Sturgeon that the SNP could force Labour to scrap the missile - a demand the nationalists have suggested would be crucial to any post election pact.
Mr Alexander, speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr show, also said the SNP wanted a Tory win and an in-out EU vote to try to force another independence referendum, as he insisted Labour could win outright despite Ed Miliband’s poor personal approval ratings.
However, former SNP leader Alex Salmond, insisted the nationalists and a “progressive” alliance of other parties could potentially force a minority Labour government into agreeing the removal of Trident from Scotland.
The former First Minister, who is attempting to return to Westminster, said that after the General Election, the House of Commons would vote on whether to renew Trident.
Mr Salmond, speaking on Sky News, said that SNP MPs would attempt to block the renewal of Trident and that the party would try to “stop that happening”.