Boris Johnson has likened the Union between Scotland and England to a marriage, stating that it is “no marriage of convenience” ahead of his visit to Scotland today.
The Prime Minister, who was writing for The Times is set to meet members of the armed forces and their families as he tours the country following the Covid-19 crisis.
He will spend the time highlight economic support from the UK Treasury during the crisis, but arrives amidst “panic” in the Tory ranks about the increasing support for Scottish independence.Mr Johnson said he had pledged to be a Prime Minister for “every corner” of the United Kingdom, saying he promised to “level up” across Britain “whether you are from East Kilbride or Dumfries, Motherwell or Paisley”.
Likening the union to a marriage, the twice married politician said the “sheer heft” of the UK economy kept businesses afloat during the coronavirus lockdown.
He added 900,000 workers had been supported by the UK government’s job protection scheme and claimed £4.6 billion had been given to the Scottish Government during the crisis.
He said: “The past six months have shown exactly why the historic and heartfelt bond that ties the four nations of our country together is so important and the sheer might of our Union has been proven once again.
“There have always been and will always be those who, for their own reasons, devote their time and energy to driving us apart.
"But the simple truth is that whether it’s a Scottish scientist discovering penicillin in a London lab, an English-born author churning out chapters of Harry Potter in an Edinburgh café, or Westminster and Holyrood working together to secure tens of millions of pounds for the Islands Growth Deal, the people of the UK have always achieved more as four than as one.
“That is what makes us the most successful political union the world has ever seen, and why being Scottish and British means so much more than ‘someone who lives in this part of the world’.
"Because this is no marriage of convenience — and we are there for each other in sickness and in health.”
Nicola Sturgeon said she will not meet with the Prime Minister and in a tweet said his visit “highlights” one of the “key arguments for independence”.
She said: “I welcome the PM to Scotland today. One of the key arguments for independence is the ability of Scotland to take our own decisions, rather than having our future decided by politicians we didn’t vote for, taking us down a path we haven’t chosen. His presence highlights that.”
Angus Robertson, the former leader of the SNP in the House of Commons, added: “Boris Johnson’s day trip reminds voters in Scotland he is a Prime Minister they didn’t vote for, heading a party that hasn’t won an election in Scotland since 1955, delivering Brexit which they oppose.
"No wonder a majority now supports Scottish independence.”
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.
The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive. We are now more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism.
Subscribe to scotsman.com and enjoy unlimited access to Scottish news and information online and on our app. Visit https://www.scotsman.com/subscriptions now to sign up.
By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.