David Cameron visit will ‘boost yes vote’

DAVID CAMERON personifies “everything that is wrong” with British politics, Alex Salmond said as the Prime Minister prepared for his latest intervention in the independence contest.

Alex Salmond says David Cameron is 'everything that is wrong with British politics'. Picture: Neil Hanna
Alex Salmond says David Cameron is 'everything that is wrong with British politics'. Picture: Neil Hanna

The First Minister said an expected visit to Scotland by Mr Cameron would be counter-productive and provide a further boost to the Yes campaign.

The Prime Minister is expected to travel to Scotland soon and Whitehall is working on its latest analysis papers about the issues around independence.

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Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael updated the Westminster Cabinet on the latest developments in the referendum campaign today.

Mr Salmond welcomed the Prime Minister’s planned visit, telling BBC Radio 4’s World at One that Mr Cameron was a “substantial liability for the No campaign in Scotland”.

The Herald newspaper suggested that Whitehall was preparing to set out the “Union dividend” - how much membership of the UK benefits the people of Scotland.

But Mr Salmond said that in four out of the last five years there has been a “very substantial subsidy from Scotland to Westminster” rather than the other way around.

“So for David Cameron to come, yet again, and argue, yet again, that somehow Scotland either doesn’t pay its way or couldn’t stand on its own two feet is simply being seen as ridiculous by the population at large,” he said.

“The problem for the No campaign is they keep saying that we are going to hear a positive case for the Union but when they come to deliver their message it’s the same old negative whining and running down of Scotland. Scotland has moved beyond the fearmongering of David Cameron.

“And he personifies everything that is wrong with the politics in this country at the present moment, where a Tory Prime Minister with minimal, negligible support in Scotland can command political authority over our country, a country which has never, and will never, elect people like him to govern us.

“That is a democratic deficit which is one of the key arguments which is propelling the Yes campaign forward.”

Mr Salmond also insisted that any negotiations in the event of a Yes vote on September 18 would not include the prospect of Trident nuclear weapons remaining in Scotland.

Insisting that they would go within the first term of a post-independence Scottish parliament he said: “Removing nuclear weapons from Scottish soil is not a negotiating tactic, it’s one of the reasons why Scotland should become an independent country.

“Of course there will be negotiations but Trident is non-negotiable outwith the terms of the first term of the Scottish Parliament.”