No vote 'leads first Scottish independence poll in 22' amid Alex Salmond controversy

A majority would vote to reject independence, new polling has revealed.

The latest polling from Survation shows 44 per cent of Scots would support staying in the UK if a referendum were held tomorrow, with 43 choosing to leave.

Once the “don’t knows” are removed, the sides are deadlocked at 50-50 in a shock poll that comes after 22 consecutive polls showing a majority would vote for independence.

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Undertaken by Sunday Mail, the poll also shows a majority now believe the SNP have been in power for “too long”.

A majority would vote to reject independence, new polling has revealed.

It comes after a difficult week for the SNP, that saw Nicola Sturgeon’s party hauled over the coals by her predecessor Alex Salmond during a sensational evidence session.

Quizzing 1001 Scots on Thursday and Friday, it also found half believe the First Minister should resign if she is found to have broken the rules.Just 33 per cent think Ms Sturgeon should continue in those circumstances, with 17 per cent unsure.

The polling also revealed 39 per cent believe there has been a Government cover-up over the handling of sexual harassment claims against Mr Salmond, compared to 32 per cent who do not.

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Asked if the handling of claims against the former FM was a failure of Government, 44 per cent said it was.

However, voters were less convinced by Mr Salmond's suggestion there was a plot to damage his reputation.

Just 32 per cent agreed with his statement, compared to 34 per cent disagreeing.

Mr Salmond made his long-awaited appearance at a Scottish Parliament inquiry on Friday, where he gave an account to the committee of meetings he had with Ms Sturgeon that appeared to contradict her version of events.

Giving evidence to the Holyrood inquiry into the Scottish Government’s botched investigation of sexual harassment claims against him, Mr Salmond also said Scotland’s “leadership has failed” and called for the Lord Advocate and the head of Scotland’s civil service, Permanent Secretary Leslie Evans, to resign over the handling of the complaints against him.

Ms Sturgeon has previously insisted there is “not a shred of evidence” there was a conspiracy against Mr Salmond and has denied lying to Parliament.

She is scheduled to appear before the committee on Wednesday, and her spokesman said she “looks forward” to addressing issues Mr Salmond raised.

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