Sunday, 08 February 2009
Welcoming the latest TNS System Three poll in the Sunday Herald, which shows support for independence increasing to 38 per cent while opposition has fallen to 40 per cent, Scottish National Party Depute Leader and Deputy First Minister Ms Nicola Sturgeon MSP said:
"This is an excellent poll, demonstrating that support for independence is rising as the SNP deliver good government through measures such as freezing council tax, reducing business rates, abolishing prescription charges and delivering a record number of police officers.
"In August 2007, the gap between independence and the unequal Union was 15 points; by last November it had halved to just 8 points; and now independence is running neck and neck with the status quo. It is a hugely encouraging trend.
"The SNP have a solid lead over Labour, and the case for independence and equality for Scotland is also moving forward.
"The poll was conducted during the Budget process, and shows that the argument for economic and financial powers for Scotland's Parliament is being won. In the current recession, the ability to borrow would enable the Scottish Government to take the decisons needed to reflate Scotland's economy and protect jobs.
"Only last week, the Parliament voted overwhelmingly in favour of borrowing powers, with no opposition.
"The SNP Government will bring forward a Bill in 2010 for a referendum, and challenge the London parties not to stand in the way of the people's right to choose Scotland's future. And this poll shows that support for independence is high enough and strong enough for that referendum to be won."
The TNS System Three poll was conducted from 28 January to 3 February. It asks the independence question using the wording in the Scottish Government's National Conversation White Paper.
Agree that Scotland should negotiate independence:
August 2007 Yes: 35 per cent No: 50 per cent
November 2008 Yes: 35 per cent No: 43 per cent
February 2009 Yes: 38 per cent No: 40 per cent