Three quarters of Scots want all oil revenues to be Scottish

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by Dave Taylor

Well, that depends on whether you believe the Survation Poll for the Mail on Sunday.
Those of you who aren’t polling geeks may not know that Survation allows its clients to ask questions which are hugely politically biased. That bias is evident in the questions the Mail on Sunday wanted put to voters in Scotland.

For example: “If Scotland were to become an independent country do you think it should then join European Union?”

As opposed to what they could have asked: “If Scotland were to become an independent country do you think it should then leave the European Union?”

Their question was also ungrammatical (see us teachers!) I have corrected their error in my alternative version. More importantly, the assumption in their question was that we would have to apply to join the EU, rather than apply to leave it. How you ask questions in polls influences the answers.

This question is, however, reasonably phrased: “If Scotland were to become an independent country do you think it should then join Euro currency?”

Still bad grammar, but the poll found 79% in support of the SNP policy that an independent Scotland should stick with sterling, isn’t too bad. Mr Osborne, the Scots don’t agree with you. I bet he’ll find that a real surprise.

On Westminster voting intention, they have Labour 40%, SNP 31%, Tory 17%, LD 10%. The “Scotland Votes” calculator says that, on the old boundaries, Lib-Dems would lose 4 seats – 2 to the SNP and 1 each to Tory and Labour, while one seat would move fron Labour to SNP.

On the constitutional questions: “Do you think that Scotland should leave the United Kingdom and become an independent country?” Yes 23% : No 52% : Undecided 26%

“Do you think that Scotland should be granted full financial independence from the United Kingdom, but remain part of the Union?” Yes 32% : No 35% : Undecided 33%

One question or two, and the inclusion of the word ‘independence’ in a question asking about what voters would like for Scotland within the UK is potentially misleading.   

Independence only question – 35% (comprised of 70% of Tories, 35% of Labour, 34% of LDs and 26% of SNP voters.

Additional Devo Max question – 50% (comprised of 26% of Tories, 51% of Labour, 54% of LDs and 66% of SNP voters.

“Who do you think has handled the issue of Scottish independence the best over the past week?” Salmond 46% : Cameron 22% : Don’t Know 32%

I almost forgot the oil question! “If Scotland were to become an independent country then it should be allowed to keep all the revenue generated from North Sea Oil?”

Agree – 74% :
Neither agree nor disagree/Don’t Know – 18%
Disagree – 8%

At this point, I need to disassociate myself from those agreeing with that statement. I don’t think that Scotland has any right to the revenues from the Norwegian, Danish, German, Dutch, Belgian or, English sectors of “North Sea Oil”. We should just get the revenues from our sector.