Sting for Sturgeon: Support for independence in Scotland falls to 40%, poll shows

Sting for Sturgeon: Support for independence in Scotland falls to 40%, poll shows
Support for Scottish independence has plummeted to 40 percent among Scottish voters, according to a new poll, further undermining First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s plans for another referendum.

According to a survey published on Tuesday by Kantar Scottish Opinion Monitor, support for another independence vote is “weakening,” as up to 60 percent support remaining part of the UK.

Sturgeon recently won the Scottish Parliament’s blessing to seek a second independence referendum, to be held at some point between autumn 2018 and spring 2019. 

The last independence referendum held in September 2014 saw 55 percent vote against independence, with 45 percent in favor.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May, however, has already said “now is not the time” for another referendum, as she claimed it would not be fair for the Scottish people to vote without knowing the actual terms of Brexit.

Sturgeon faces a fresh blow, as the latest poll found that a mere 26 percent back her ambition to hold a vote within her proposed timeframe, while 46 percent are completely opposed to a vote taking place at all.

A total of 1,060 Scots aged 16 and above were questioned between the end of March and the beginning of April, after Sturgeon secured the Scottish parliament’s approval.

Surprisingly, one-third of those who voted Leave in the EU referendum in July and Yes to Scottish independence back in 2014 oppose another vote.

“One group of particular interest is those who voted Yes in the 2014 independence referendum and then voted Leave in the EU referendum – one in three (30 percent) of this group do not want a referendum at all, possibly suggesting that leaving the EU was their primary goal and at the time Scottish independence seemed the best way to achieve this,” Tom Costley, head of Kantar in Scotland, said.

“It is a cautionary reminder that the positive feeling towards the EU expressed in the EU referendum doesn’t necessarily translate into full support for independence for Scotland,” he said, according to the Telegraph.

Scottish National Party (SNP) leader Sturgeon is already reeling after two polls over the weekend predicted the Tories will win 12 seats in Scotland during the June 8 general election.

Sturgeon insists the general election results will have no bearing on her intent to take Scotland out of the UK.

“People who want to make sure that Scotland has strong voices against the Conservatives in this election need to vote for the SNP because that’s what this election above all else is about,” she said at a union conference in Aviemore on Monday.

“The election won’t decide whether or not Scotland becomes independent, we got a mandate for the referendum in the election last year,” the SNP leader observed.

“So this is about whether Scotland’s voice is heard and Scotland’s interests are protected. And there is a clear choice. A vote for the Tories is not some pain-free tactical vote."