Scottish independence: Cameron has given up on keeping Scotland in UK - Peter Cruddas
THE latest revelations from films of the disgraced former Conservative Party treasurer Peter Cruddas have led to a claim by the SNP that Prime Minister David Cameron has given up on keeping Scotland in the UK.
The claim comes after footage emerged over the weekend of Mr Cruddas describing how the party must fight to keep the UK together “even if they don’t agree with it” in order to tell Scots what powers they will be denied in post-independence negotiations, it has been reported.
Mr Cruddas quit last weekend after the Sunday Times published secret recordings in which he urged undercover reporters to give more than £250,000 in return for direct face-time with senior ministers.
The report sparked calls for an independent inquiry into allegations that Mr Cruddas was negotiating “cash for access”.
Mr Cruddas added: “He told me that was, those were his true feelings, however, even if they’re not, we as a party have to be seen to be fighting to keep the Union together.
“Even if we don’t agree with it, because at the end of it all, if the Scots say we’re out of here and they want to go independent, we can turn around and say it’s not what we wanted, it’s not what we campaigned for, you can’t have this, you can’t have that, and you can get on with it.”
SNP Westminster leader and referendum campaign director Angus Robertson MP said that the latest footage amounts to more damaging revelations for the Scottish Tories who have been “left looking ridiculous” and isolated by their London bosses.
He said: “It shows that senior Tories in London are cynically faking their opposition to independence to position themselves for a post-independence deal.
“The Cruddas revelations show they believe in nothing except protecting Westminster interests. Their claims about winning the referendum are exposed as mere bravado.
“In fact, they are already preparing to lose.”
The revelation followed reports of the involvement of the United and Cecil Club, a members’ association, in the Scottish Tory referendum campaign, which has been reprimanded over illegal donations.
The Tories faced other damaging revelations over claims that Mr Cameron had failed to disclose all his dinners with donors.
And Mr Cruddas, the disgraced former Tory party treasurer, claimed to have direct access to Mr Cameron on at least 13 occasions – even bankrolling a dinner at Chequers.
Shadow Cabinet Office minister Jon Trickett said Mr Cameron now needed to “come clean” over the full scale of his meetings with wealthy Conservative Party donors.
“He needs to establish an independent inquiry immediately so people can have confidence that this matter will be resolved,” Mr Trickett said.
“This drip, drip of revelations cannot be allowed to continue. We need a full list of all donors met by David Cameron, not just those the Conservatives themselves class as ‘significant’.”
In a statement, the Conservative Party said: “Over last weekend there was speculation about dinners in the Prime Minister’s flat in Downing Street.
“In response to this, the Conservative Party published details of occasions when significant donors had lunch or dinner in official residences used by the Prime Minister, ie Downing Street and Chequers.”
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Saturday 25 May 2013
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