News   /   Politics

Labor leader Starmer expresses opposition to Indyref2

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Keir Starmer appears to have changed his mind on the issue of a Scottish independence vote

Labor Party leader, Keir Starmer, has come out in opposition to the vexed issue of a second Scottish independence referendum, known as Indyref2.

In an interview with Sky News on Sunday (September 20), Starmer complained that he was “frustrated” over talks of a new Scottish independence referendum.

Adopting an offensive posture on the issue, Starmer “advised” the Scottish National Party (SNP) and the Scottish government (which is led by the SNP) to instead “focus” on the coronavirus pandemic.  

“I think another independence referendum will be divisive and that’s why the Labor Party will be campaigning into the May elections on the economy, rebuilding the economy, on ensuring our public services are in the right place and defeating coronavirus”, Starmer told Sky News.

“I’m frustrated in a sense that in the middle of a pandemic we’ve got the SNP talking about independence, we’ve got the Tory party talking about Brexit when, in my view, they should be focusing on pulling together to defeat the virus”, Starmer added.

Asked by Sky News whether there should be a second independence referendum if the SNP win a majority in the next election, Starmer retorted: “The Labor Party will be campaigning into May on the basis that what we don’t want is another divisive referendum”.

In a separate interview with the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show (September 20), Starmer steadfastly refused to be drawn into a discussion on the Scottish independence referendum and Labor’s official position on the issue.

Starmer’s latest commentary on indyref2 directly contradicts the position he set out in January when he unequivocally said that if the SNP secure a majority in the 2021 Scottish Parliament (Holyrood) elections in May 2021 then “they [SNP] will have a mandate for that [a new independence referendum]”.  

Starmer’s opposition to a Scottish independence vote comes against the backdrop of new opinion polls suggesting consistently strong support among Scots for independence.

The latest opinion poll, by Survation, suggests 53 percent of respondents are in favor of independence.

Earlier in August, another poll by Panelbase found that 55 percent of respondents support the cause of Scottish independence.  



Press TV’s website can also be accessed at the following alternate addresses:

Press TV News Roku