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FM desperate over 2nd question

February 29, 2012 11:25 AM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Following the First Minister's declaration that Devo Plus could appear on the referendum ballot paper as the 2nd question, Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats Willie Rennie MSP has written to Alex Salmond to press him again on how a second question would be fair.

Willie Rennie MSPWillie Rennie MSPCommenting, Mr Rennie said:

"I have asked the First Minister until I am blue in the face how the second question would be fair but my questions are met with an uncharacteristic silence from him.

"There is something rather sad about his enthusiasm for second question. In fact he seems more enthusiastic about the second question than he does about his policy of independence.

"But in his desperation he is overlooking one critical detail - a second question would be treated as a second class question. Even if Devo Plus was to win by a landslide independence would still triumph if it were to sneak over the 50% mark. That is hardly democratic.

"A clear sign of his lack of confidence on the mechanics of a second question is his own consultation on the referendum which doesn't spell out how the second question would work.

"The two paragraphs of guidance contained in their consultation only informs the reader that they will seek the advice of experts. This compares with their previous consultation which set out in great detail how this would work over twelve pages.

"I have written to the First Minister today to again seek an explanation. I suspect the silence will continue but even in his desperation he needs to examine the detail."