The threat to Scotland’s place in the European Union in the event of a No vote has been highlighted again today – after it emerged that up to 100 Tory MPs are preparing to include a personal pledge in their election manifestos to vote for the UK to quit the EU.
Media reports today suggest that the move will be seen as a “vote of no confidence” in David Cameron’s ability to negotiate an EU deal which would be acceptable to the increasingly Eurosceptic Westminster establishment – and follows on from reports last week that Mr Cameron himself would back an EU exit if he didn’t get his way in negotiations.
Today’s revelation follows on from David Cameron’s visit to Scotland last week ending in humiliation for the Prime Minister – after CBI President Mike Rake warned of the impact on business of his in/out EU referendum.
And Mr Cameron faced yet further embarrassment last week with the defection of Tory MP Douglas Carswell to UKIP – and a new poll suggesting that UKIP will easily win the resulting by-election in Clacton.
Commenting, SNP MSP Christian Allard said:
“Membership of the European Union is a good thing for Scotland – and the idea that we could find ourselves ripped out of the EU against our will by a Euro-hostile Tory party we didn’t vote for shows exactly why a Yes vote is so vital
“Already 100 Tory MPs are getting ready to back an EU exit – and as UKIP continue to increase in popularity south of the border, the centre of gravity at Westminster is only going to shift further to the right.
“As we get closer to the referendum, the threat to Scotland’s place in Europe posed by an out of touch Westminster establishment obsessed with UKIP is becoming even clearer – and highlights exactly why we need a Yes vote.
“A Yes vote in just over two weeks is our one opportunity to ensure Scotland can play a positive, constructive role at the heart of Europe – rather than risking isolation and irrelevance with Westminster.”