Salmond ‘would work with Tories to keep UK in EU’

Alex Salmond with fellow SNP MPs Callum McCaig, Eilidh Whiteford, Kirsty Blackman and Stuart Donaldson at Westminster. Picture: PA

Alex Salmond with fellow SNP MPs Callum McCaig, Eilidh Whiteford, Kirsty Blackman and Stuart Donaldson at Westminster. Picture: PA

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ALEX Salmond has indicated that he would be prepared to campaign with George Osborne to keep Britain in Europe.

The former SNP leader suggested he would be prepared to work with the Chancellor in a BBC interview during which he described himself as “one of the more popular politicians in the country”.

George Osborne. Picture: Getty

George Osborne. Picture: Getty

Speaking on BBC’s Newsnight programme, Mr Salmond was asked if he could share a platform with Mr Osborne, who will lead the campaign to keep the UK in the EU during the forthcoming referendum.

The former First Minister replied: “Listen, I share platforms with everybody except fascists and non-democrats.”

Mr Salmond did, however, suggest that Mr Osborne should not play a prominent role in the campaign to remain in Europe north of the border.

“(I) say this sincerely to George Osborne, please – not a figurehead in Scotland. Not if you want a Yes vote.”

“I am one of the more popular politicians in the country. I just say that because it is true”

Alex Salmond

Mr Salmond said the campaign to remain in Europe should not be an “establishment carve-up” and suggested that it would run into difficulties if politicians played too prominent a role.

“I am one of the more popular politicians in the country. I just say that because it is true,” Mr Salmond said.

“Nicola Sturgeon is the outstanding most popular politician in the country at the present moment. But even Nicola Sturgeon with all her appeal and all her popularity and all her positive opinion poll ratings is still a politician. We must not make this campaign about politicians.”

Labour’s Jackie Baillie said: “Alex Salmond’s hypocrisy is staggering. After years spent attacking the Labour Party during the referendum, he is now jumping into bed with the Tories on the EU referendum.

“With Alex Salmond’s opposition to the Living Wage, calls for corporation tax cuts and attacks on student support funding, I think he and George Osborne may agree on more than just Europe.”

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