Many SNP figures have said that Brexit and the handling of the coronavirus pandemic has made the current Prime Minister is the best case for Scottish independence.
With recent polling conducted by The Sunday Times showing that a Yes vote holds a 7% lead, polling guru Sir John Curtice has said: “This is the first time in Scottish polling history where we have had such a sustained lead for ‘Yes’ over a significant period of time.” Boris Johnson and Unionists are justifiably concerned.
In response, the Prime Minister has gone a quick tour of Scotland, where he met business owners and members of the armed forces, but he did not see First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
Johnson’s trip coincides with reports that he has ordered ministers to spend more time north of the border in an effort improve Westminster’s image.
Despite Nicola Sturgeon’s insistence, the Prime Minister has clearly stated that he will not allow another Scottish referendum. He recently reiterated his stance by claiming that the response to the coronavirus had “shown exactly why the historic and heartfelt bond that ties the four nations of our country together is so important.”
But he may find it much harder to refuse another independence vote if the SNP support continues to rise, with it looking likely they will win a majority in the Holyrood elections due in May 2021. And the same polls that are suggesting growing support for independence are predicting a very good result for Nicola Sturgeon’s party next year.
If Johnson can wake his party up to the danger that the Union is in, he’ll have made it that much more likely than it can be saved.
Never before have the foundations of public support for the Union looked so weak.