Election 2019

Election 2019: Vote on 'knife edge', claim Scottish Tories

jackson Carlaw Image copyright PA Media

The general election in Scotland is on a "knife edge" according to interim Scottish Conservatives leader Jackson Carlaw.

Mr Carlaw has issued a tactical voting plea for pro-union supporters to back his party in Thursday's vote.

He claimed it was the only way to "make Nicola Sturgeon listen for once" on the issue of independence.

Ms Sturgeon argues an indyref vote is justified due to the "contemptuous way in which Scotland has been treated".

The Lib Dems and Labour are both campaigning in this election on the basis of opposing Scottish independence.

Mr Carlaw said: "In 2017, people came together and backed the Scottish Conservatives.

"It hit the SNP hard and, as a result, we forced Nicola Sturgeon to put indyref2 on hold.

"We need to tell her again and halt the nationalists in their tracks. Across Scotland, this election is on a knife edge. A few hundred voters could make all the difference."

Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie said his party can "end the constitutional chaos" and has also made a tactical voting pitch.

He said: "It's going to be a close contest with lots of people backing us to stop another independence referendum which Nicola Sturgeon wants to hold in a matter of months or even weeks.

"Traditional Conservative and Labour voters are backing the Lib Dems to win this time as they are determined to end the constitutional division in this country."

The SNP's campaign is based on both opposing Brexit and pursuing a fresh referendum on Scottish independence.

Speaking to BBC Radio Scotland, Ms Sturgeon said the country's "interests, voice and views" had been "ignored" over the past three years and repeated her call for a second independence referendum in the second half of 2020.

Image copyright PA Media
Image caption The SNP campaign bus travels through the Pass of Glencoe in the Highlands during its tour of Scotland in the final week of the election campaign

Labour, both at UK and Scottish level, is opposed to Scottish independence.

However, Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard said the party would not block indyref2 if pro-independence parties win a majority at the next Holyrood election,

Mr Leonard said a Labour-led UK government would grant the powers to hold a second independence referendum in this scenario.

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