Oh dear, Nicola! Sturgeon humiliated as just 97 people tune in to watch major Indy speech
Tories should help to organise Scottish referendum says SNP MP
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At one point, just 97 people were tuned in to Ms Sturgeon’s closing remarks as she spoke passionately from her living room. The virtual conference was the first meeting of the Scottish National Party since their election victory in May, newly consolidated in recent weeks by the SNP/Green deal. Their pact in Holyrood represented a “renewed spirit of co-operation,” which Sturgeon picked up on in her speech. Climate change and greener energy sources featured prominently in the SNP leader’s monologue ahead of the COP26 Climate Change Conference, due to take place in Glasgow this year.
The pandemic also made an appearance in Ms Sturgeon’s speech, as she reflected on how “leading this country through the Covid crisis is the most important job I’ve ever had.”
However, this message was a sideshow to the topic Ms Sturgeon wanted to zero in on – imploring the UK government to consent to a second Scottish independence referendum.
During her address, Ms Sturgeon argued the UK government were using economics to try to quell independence calls in Scotland.
She then suggested that Scottish voters should “resist” the temptation to believe that Brexit has made Scotland more dependent on the rest of the UK.
“Brexit will make us poorer year after year after year. Trade with Europe will decline, our working population is likely to fall,” she stressed to those who tuned in.
“But there’s a double whammy that Scotland must be alert to, and resist with everything we’ve got, and it is this: Westminster will use all that damage, that they have inflicted, as an argument for yet more Westminster control.”
“By making us poorer, they’ll say that we can’t afford to be independent,” she continued.
Through Brexit and reducing trading with Europe, she argued, “they’ll say we are too dependent on the rest of the UK.”
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“They want us to believe that we are powerless.”
The Scottish Conservatives responded by denouncing Ms Sturgeon’s claims of Westminster intentionally making Scotland a poorer country to block calls for independence as a “wild conspiracy theory.”
The SNP leader also slammed the UK government’s plans to cut Universal Credit payments by 20 pounds per week, comparing this to Scottish government plans to increase payments for children in low-income households.
The cut to Universal Credit “will, quite literally, take food out of children’s mouths,” Ms Sturgeon said, staring straight down her computer camera lens.
Again, the prospect of a second independence referendum was threaded through each argument which Ms Sturgeon laid out.
Her parting message was that the UK government was terrified that Scotland would see “that independence works,” as she held up various European nations as proof of her argument.
“Democracy must, and will, prevail” with the referendum, said Ms Sturgeon to her virtual audience.
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