‘SNP recruiting sergeant!’ Lib Dems blast Boris and reject Unionist pact to block IndyRef2

Brexit: Ed Davey is grilled on Lib Dems’ stance on EU future

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Labour and the Liberal Democrats have been accused of forging a progression non-aggression pact in England in an attempt to oust Boris Johnson from Number 10. Both parties have rejected the claim but last week’s double-whammy by-election defeat for Mr Johnson in Tiverton & Honiton and Wakefield appear to suggest tactical voting took place on an industrial scale. Despite Nicola Sturgeon unveiling a new plan to hold an independence referendum in 2023, the Liberal Democrats have unequivocally ruled out a pro-UK pact with the Tories and Labour north of the border.

A spokesperson for Sir Ed Davey’s party told Express.co.uk: “There are no pacts and there can be no pacts because the Conservative Party are part of the problem.

“Boris Johnson is the best recruiting sergeant the nationalists could ask for.

“The best way to kill support for independence is to replace this Boris Johnson Government.”

The intervention comes hours after Nicola Sturgeon announced she has taken the Scottish independence issue to the Supreme Court.

The First Minister went on to reveal the Scottish National Party (SNP) will run an election campaign based on delivering a second poll at the next election if the UK’s highest court rejects her petition.

There are 13 constituencies in Scotland in which the leading Unionist party is just 10 percent or less behind the SNP and where total votes for pro-UK parties tallied more votes than the nationalists.

Tactical voting or a non-aggression pact could help pro-UK parties snatch numerous seats and also defend key marginals, including Caithness, Sutherland & Easter Ross, Moray and Aberdeenshire West & Kincardine.

The SNP won 48 out of 59 seats in Scotland in the 2019 general election, despite only receiving 45 percent of the vote.

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However, this is not the first time Mr Johnson has faced allegations of inadvertently assisting the pro-independence campaign.

After internal polling in April revealed that 40 percent of voters were more likely to support independence because Mr Johnson is Prime Minister, Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar said: “This blows the Tories’ claim to be the party of the Union out of the water.

“Far from being the great defenders of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson’s Tories are a gift to the failing SNP and a recruiting agent for those that seek to divide us.

“The United Kingdom deserves better than Boris Johnson’s disastrous and incompetent leadership.”

According to YouGov, Mr Johnson’s -45 percent approval rating plummets to -57 percent north of the border.

The Prime Minister has also come under fire from Scottish Tories following the publication of Sue Gray’s investigation into lockdown-breaking parties in Whitehall.

During his confidence vote, four out of six Conservative MPs north of the border voted to remove Mr Johnson, including Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross and ex-Scotland Secretary David Mundell.

John Lamont delivered a hammer blow after he stood down as parliamentary private secretary in the Foreign Office.

The Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk MP said he received thousands of messages from constituents who were “rightly deeply angered” about partygate.

Speaking earlier on the final day of the G7 summit, Mr Johnson responded to Nicola Sturgeon’s recent IndyRef2 announcement.

The Prime Minister said the Government would “see what she [Nicola Sturgeon] has to say”.

He added: “I think the important point to make is that we think the number one priority for the country is the economic pressures, the spikes in the cost of energy.”

Ms Sturgeon’s plan to hold an independence referendum in October 2023, less than a decade after Scots voted decisively against exiting the 315-year-old Union, was unveiled in Holyrood yesterday.

Ms Sturgeon told MSPs: “The UK and Scottish Government should be sitting down together, responsibly agreeing a process, including a Section 30 order, that allows the Scottish people to decide.”

The First Minister, who even claimed she “will never allow Scottish democracy to be a prisoner of Boris Johnson or any Prime Minister”, went on to announce she has penned a letter informing Mr Johnson that the Lord Advocate has referred the independence question to the Supreme Court.

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A Government spokesperson responded by saying: “We are clear that now is not the time to be talking about another independence referendum.

“People across Scotland want to see both of their governments working together on the issues that matter to them.

“That includes tackling the cost of living, ensuring energy security, leading the international response against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and growing our economy.

“That remains our priority.”

Unionists of all stripes have come out to condemn Ms Sturgeon’s plan.

Scotland in Union chief executive Pamela Nash said: “Nicola Sturgeon is acting against the will of the people of Scotland.

“Poll after poll shows that the vast majority of us do not want a second referendum.

“The First Minister’s announcement is a disgraceful waste of resources and public money.”

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