Nigel Farage on Scottish independence, poll support in Scotland, and North Sea oil and gas

Nigel Farage has laid out his stance for Scottish voters ahead of the general election in two weeks’ time

Reform UK is now the independence party. That is my message to the Scottish people before the UK General Election on July 4.

No, as our name suggests, we don’t support an independent Scotland. We believe that Britain is stronger together. But we are offering people in Scotland the chance to be independent of the political establishment; to take back control of your lives from the old parties of the nanny state.

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For too long, Scotland has effectively been a one-party state, run by political cliques. First it was Labour, then the Scottish National party. Polls suggest that Labour is overtaking the stricken SNP again. Yet there is little or no enthusiasm for Sir Keir Starmer’s outfit, either.

Nigel Farage addresses the media. Picture: PANigel Farage addresses the media. Picture: PA
Nigel Farage addresses the media. Picture: PA

More and more Scots have simply had enough of both the old parties who have treated them with contempt. They are desperate for a change. Reform’s support in Scotland is on the rise, almost doubling to 7 per cent in the latest YouGov poll – with Labour down by 5 per cent. We are recruiting Scottish members daily.

Who else is going to stand up to Labour in Westminster and hold Starmer to account? The SNP is far too divided and preoccupied with its own problems. The UK Tories will be even more hopeless in opposition than they are in government. Their implosion is clearest in Scotland, where Douglas Ross last week became the first party leader in Britain to step down in the middle of a general election campaign.

Reform is now the real opposition. We are standing on policies that can allow the people to take back control from the failed political establishment – whether that’s by stopping the mass immigration that has made our housing shortage and crumbling services much worse, or raising the income tax threshold to £20,000 to put more money in hard-working people’s pockets.

Net zero is the issue that best reveals the gap between Reform and the parties of the Holyrood elite. The SNP really does not want any oil or gas exploration in the North Sea, despite trying to soften its opposition a bit with electoral defeat looming. The Labour Party has just doubled down on its pledge to grant no more North Sea oil or gas licences.

Their pursuit of irrational, unachievable climate targets is madness. It risks destroying many thousands of well-paid jobs in Scotland, and forcing people and industries across the UK to pay much more for energy. We would slash energy bills by scrapping net zero and the £10 billion of subsidies paid to ‘green’ energy suppliers. And we would fast-track licences to open up the North Sea as the first stage of our plan to provide the cheap, secure energy we need for the future.

Our message is galvanising voters who used to vote Labour or SNP – or have never thought it worth voting for anybody before. They are the forgotten Scots, like the million-plus who voted for Brexit, for too long taken for granted by the establishment parties.

As a Scottish supporter recently said to me, “we’re ordinary folk who are just fed up with it all”. Join the revolt.

- Nigel Farage is the leader of Reform



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