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Friday, February 07, 2014

Saving the union

David Cameron launches an offensive this morning to persuade the Scots to vote no to independence by seeking to win the hearts and minds of the English!

According to the Times he will urge every Briton with a friend or family member in Scotland to persuade them to vote against independence. They add that Mr Cameron has so far refused to debate independence head to head with Alex Salmond, Scotland’s First Minister and SNP leader. But he will court further criticism by making his first speech on the subject not in Scotland, but in London.

“This is a decision that is squarely and solely for those in Scotland to make,” the Prime Minister will say. “But my argument today is that though only four million people can vote in this referendum, all sixty-three million of us are profoundly affected. There are sixty-three million of us who could wake up on September 19th in a different country, with a different future ahead of it.” Urging those in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to use their influence over Scottish friends and family, Mr Cameron will add that all Britons will suffer a blow to their prestige and reputation in the event of a “yes” vote. “We would be deeply diminished without Scotland. From us to the people of Scotland let the message be this: We want you to stay.”

I agree with the Prime Minister that whichever Scotland votes will affect the whole of the UK and that therefore we all have a stake in the outcome of this referendum. My concern is that this initiative will turn out to be as ill-starred as the Guardian's attempts to turn Ohio against George W Bush in 2004.
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