DEJA-VU, anyone?

Just over two years ago, 61 per cent of East Lothian voted for Scotland to remain part of the UK. On Monday, Nicola Sturgeon ignored the voice of the majority and announced her plan to get the ball rolling for a second independence referendum. This is foolhardy and will force people to vote blind on the biggest political decision our country could face.

On the streets, voters throughout the county worry about everyday issues that an SNP Government has ignored for over 10 years. The party has disregarded problems in our education system. It has side-tracked the health service as patients face longer waiting times in hospitals and GP surgeries.

Nicola Sturgeon says she wants compromise – but in reality, since the morning after Brexit, she’s been working towards breaking up the UK.

Nicola Sturgeon claims Scotland will leave the world’s single biggest market but ignores Scotland’s biggest trading partner, which is the rest of the UK. Scotland exports more than four times as much to the UK as it does to the EU. In 2015, total Scottish exports were worth £78.6 billion, with £49.8 billion going to the rest of the UK and just £12.3 billion to the EU. While EU exports represent 16 per cent of Scottish exports, 63 per cent go to the rest of the UK.

A differential deal for Scotland would mean a ‘hard economic border’. One of the UK’s foremost constitutional experts, Professor Michael Keating, said: “If Scotland were to remain within the single market and customs union, we could not simultaneously be within the UK economic union. There would be a hard border between us and England; to do otherwise would create a gap in both economic unions through which goods, services and people could flow uncontrolled.”

Whilst the SNP cultivate plans for separation and the Labour Party flip-flops, my party will vote against Sturgeon’s plans in the Scottish Parliament and stand up against her attempt to take us back to the division and uncertainty of a second independence referendum.