Robin McAlpine, a prominent Scottish independence campaigner and director of the Common Weal think tank, launched a blistering attack on First Mini
Robin McAlpine, a prominent Scottish independence campaigner and director of the Common Weal think tank, launched a blistering attack on First Minister Nicola Sturgeon for hiding behind her “self image” as he admitted achieving Scottish independence is “as close as damnit to zero”. Writing in his blog, he said it was “over to the loyalists now”. He said: “I’m tired with this, and much as I love the independence movement, more far-fetched schemes hatched on social media but with no chance of implementation may make you feel better, but will be as pointless over the five years to come as they were in the five that we just lived through.
“So as far as I’m concerned, it’s over to the loyalists now.
“Don’t tell me it’ll be different this time, that there is a secret plan, that the rise in the polls is all a result of genius, that supposed competence wins referendums, that you really, really promise to hold them to account this time, that there will be a manifesto commitment.
“I don’t believe a word of it. Set out your detailed plan now or, to quote that sentiment towards people like me who actually want independence, f*** off.”
Mr McAlpine said the SNP leader hid behind her “self-image” and Brexit to avoid steering Scotland towards independence.
He added: “If you really believe that the SNP is going to be in the same polling position by election time you probably need a reality check.
“Politics doesn’t work like that and a full year of ‘COVID, COVID, look at me, not my record’ isn’t likely to play out.
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Ms Sturgeon said: ”At no point during this have I weighed my decisions on a political basis or a constitutional basis but… at a time when I and the SNP have not been talking about independence all the time but getting on with the job of autonomous decision making and trying to get the right decisions to get the county through a crisis, support for independence appears to have increased so maybe there is a bit of a lesson in there about show not tell.”
Meanwhile, a former SNP MSP revealed he is to quit the party and join a new pro-independence party being set up for next year’s Holyrood elections.
Dave Thompson said backing Ms Sturgeon’s party in the regional list section of that ballot will “achieve nothing”.
Instead, he said he was joining the new Alliance for Independence (AFI), which he predicted could win up to 24 MSPs in next May’s election.
The new group will run under the slogan “max the Yes”, it was reported, aiming to increase the number of pro-independence representatives in the Scottish Parliament.