BBC host thrashes calls for independent Scotland to rejoin EU ‘Deficit is 8 times higher!’

BBC host says Scotland isn't 'in financial position' to rejoin EU

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SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon’s argument over Scottish independence has intensified after the party’s landslide victory in the Holyrood election in May, which also produced the largest pro-independence majority in the Parliament in history of devolution. Charlotte Street Partners’ Andrew Wilson insisted the time is right to transition to an independent Scotland. But Mr Jardine pointed out the country’s deficit is too high.

Speaking to BBC Debate Night, Mr Wilson said: “If Scotland becomes independent in the next year it would be the richest country to ever become an independent country.

“Scotland’s taxation itself is enough to pay for all of the Scottish Government’s responsibilities plus security and all of pensions – in a normal year.

“Right now is a great time to do the transition. It will be hard work but it will be worth it.

“The alternative is carrying on the way we are now if you believe the critics we are subsidised.

“Is living off handouts a life? Is that the sum of our ambition as a country? No it isn’t.”

Mr Jardine interjected: “But right now our deficit is eight times the criteria for EU membership.

“A lot of that is down to the Covid situation but we are not in a financial position to be able to certainly get back into the EU.”

Mr Wilson continued: “You can join without having hurled the three percent that you’re referring to, many countries have.

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“All countries need to have sustainable finances the question for Scotland is do you want that sustainability post-Covid led by a Conservative government you didn’t vote for or do you want to do it yourself?”

In light of the election results, speculation arose about the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge being asked to spend more time in Scotland under plans reportedly drawn up by palace officials to bolster the Union.

Kate and William would spend more time at Balmoral and strengthen ties with their former university town of St Andrews if the proposals go ahead, according to the Sunday Times.

The report comes just days after the couple’s tour of Scotland in which William said the country was “so important” to himself and wife.

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On the final day of their visit, William and Kate held a meeting with Gordon Brown who has recently launched a renewed campaign to save the Union.

The couple sat down for talks with the former prime minister and his wife Sarah at the Queen’s official Edinburgh residence.

William later gave a highly personal farewell speech as his week-long tour drew to a close, describing how Scotland has “shaped” him and praising its people and values.

Boris Johnson has since stood by his pre-election position, saying the focus should be on the recovery from Covid-19 and not on another independence referendum.

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