Support for Scottish independence has hit 56 percent, a new poll suggests in a boost to First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. The survey by Ipsos Scotland for STV of 1,065 Scots, which was carried out from November 28 to December 5, shows backing has risen in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling that the Scottish Parliament cannot legislate for a second referendum.
With undecided voters not included, 56 percent said they would back independence in a fresh ballot, while 44 percent were against breaking away from the UK.
Support for Scottish independence has risen by six points since the company’s last survey in May.
Asked when they would like to see a fresh referendum, 35 percent of respondents said before the end of next year, 17 percent said between 2024 and 2026 and the same proportion said after 2026.
Some 26 percent said they never want another vote on splitting up the Union.
The First Minister said the SNP would fight the next general election as a de facto referendum on independence following the bitter blow of last month’s Supreme Court ruling.
The poll found that if the election was being treated as a referendum, the SNP would get 53 percent of the vote, while the Scottish Greens would receive two percent.
But when asked the biggest issues facing Scotland today, independence came fourth on 23 percent.
Some 41 percent of respondents said the NHS, followed by 28 percent who said the cost of living and 23 percent who said education.
The poll also looked at satisfaction with party leaders in Scotland, with Ms Sturgeon having a net rating of nine percent.
SNP deputy leader Keith Brown said the momentum of the campaign for independence was “rocketing” and the poll showed a “clear majority” for separation.
He said: “For too long, Tories and Labour have claimed now is not the time for the people of Scotland to choose their own future.
“This poll shows clearly the people think now is the time – the Westminster parties need to recognise and respect that.
“As the chaos of Westminster control wreaks untold damage on Scotland, inflicted by successive Tory governments that we didn’t vote for, it’s no surprise that support for independence continues to rise.
“The only way to protect Scotland is through independence – it is the only way we can get rid of Tory Westminster governments for good.
“No Westminster politician can stand in the way of the Scottish people. To escape the damage of Brexit that both Labour and the Tories back, and to protect Scotland from Westminster governments Scotland doesn’t vote for, we need to choose an independent future.”