Top SNP MP: Voters don't give 'two hoots' about independence
The SNP's deputy leader at Westminster has claimed that voters “don’t give two hoots” about Scottish independence.
In surprising comments, Kirsty Blackman said the constitution is "not the biggest concern for an awful lot of people".
Poitical opponents praised the Aberdeen North MP for her “rare but welcome moment of self-awareness”.
In an interview with the Guardian, Ms Blackman said: “I don’t think most folk in their daily lives give two hoots about whether Scotland is a member of the Union.
“The constitutional issues are not the biggest concern for an awful lot of people.
“In fact, I very rarely talk about Scottish independence in the chamber, because I talk about things that matter to the people of Aberdeen.”
Scottish Labour MSP James Kelly said it was “welcome to hear an SNP MP wanting to discuss matters other than the constitution”.
He added: “Perhaps she could have a word with her colleagues in Holyrood, who have spent a decade in government neglecting public services while obsessed with breaking up the United Kingdom.”
And Lib Dem MP Jo Swinson said: “People want to see real improvements to their lives.
“Instead of the SNP’s endless obsession with independence, SNP ministers should focus on issues they have long neglected, such as ending the appalling long waits for mental health treatment and reversing the slipping performance of Scottish education.”
A spokesperson for the Scottish Conservatives said: “This is a rare but welcome moment of self-awareness from an SNP MP. Let’s hope that the rest of the party follows her lead.”