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A second Scottish independence vote would damage faith in politics: PM

Ruth Davidson
Ruth Davidson

By Katrine Bussey

Boris Johnson has insisted there is "no reason" for Scots to have the second independence referendum that Nicola Sturgeon is pushing for.

On his first visit north of the border since becoming Prime Minister, Mr Johnson declared the vote in 2014 had been a "once in a generation event" and public faith in politics would be further damaged if a second such ballot was to take place.

His comments came after the Scottish First Minister warned the new Tory leader's "hard-line" government was driving the country towards "disaster" by pushing for a no-deal Brexit.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson has also made it plain she will not support the UK leaving the European Union without a deal in place - with the issue marking a split between the Tory leadership north and south of the border.

Despite that, Mr Johnson promised he would be "doing everything I can to assist" Ms Davidson to become Scotland's next First Minister in the 2021 Holyrood election.

He hailed her as a "fantastic leader of Scottish Conservatives", adding: "I am lost in admiration at what she has achieved, I am a massive fan of the way she has taken the argument to those who would destroy our union."

Following her meeting with the Prime Minister at Holyrood, Ms Davidson said: "We had an incredibly constructive meeting. We covered a number of areas, talking about Brexit, the need to make sure we can get a deal across the line, and I support the Prime Minister wholeheartedly in getting that deal.

"We talked about how we can continue to have the UK Government deliver in Scotland, for Scots, and how we can build on that delivery, and also how we can continue to take on Nicola Sturgeon and oppose her obsession with another independence referendum."

Earlier Mr Johnson hit out at the SNP "campaign to destroy the union", and while he refused to rule out granting permission for a second independence referendum, he said comments that the 2014 ballot was a "once in a generation" event must be respected.

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