Leading Tory donor to vote Yes if no third option

LEADING TORY DONOR TO VOTE FOR INDEPENDENCE IF NO DEVO MAX OPTION ON BALLOT PAPER

“WORST OF ALL OPTIONS IS THE STATUS QUO”

FURTHER PRESSURE ON ANTI-INDEPENDENCE PARTIES TO OFFER MORE THAN ‘JAM TOMORROW’

The SNP today welcomed comments from Tory Donor John McGlynn, the Founder and Chairman of Airlink Group, that he will most likely back independence to get more economic powers for Scotland – if there is no third option on the ballot paper.

Mr McGlynn said: “If a stronger powers option is not included in the 2014 referendum I, like many others in the business community, will most likely come to the conclusion that the worst of all options is the status quo and back independence.”

The comments, reported in today’s Sunday Times, echo recent calls from other leading businessmen Sir Tom Farmer and Jim McColl, who view independence as currently the only means for the Scottish Government to gain the economic levers necessary to boost jobs and growth.

With the anti-independence parties suggesting more powers short of independence – but so far refusing to put them to the people – SNP MSP Chic Brodie has said that independence is increasingly the choice of those who want to see more financial powers for the Scottish Parliament.

Commenting, Mr Brodie, a member of the Scottish Parliament’s Economy Committee, said:

“This is a positive contribution to the debate from another leading businessman who sees the fantastic opportunity that the referendum offers Scotland.

“More and more people are coming to the view that Scotland voting Yes to independence is the only way to get the economic and job-creating powers this country so desperately needs.

“The anti-independence parties speak about more powers short of independence, but if they don’t take the opportunity to put something concrete on the table it will only encourage more people to vote Yes – as the comments of Sir Tom Farmer, Jim McColl and now John McGlynn prove.

“These successful entrepreneurs recognise that the status quo is not good enough. They know from personal experience that we badly need a full range of fiscal levers to help grow Scotland’s economy and create jobs.

“This intervention from a Tory donor puts huge pressure on Ruth Davidson. The fact is, our leading businessmen want something more than just a promise of jam tomorrow - they want to see real fiscal powers being proposed.

“The SNP has ambitions to make Scotland better – and we will be making the case for a yes vote to the people of Scotland between now and the autumn 2014 referendum.”

ENDS

Notes – for details of John McGlynn’s comments please see page 1 of today’s Sunday Times

Jim McColl told the Scotsman on 29th May “if the alternative was the status quo, I think it [independence] gives Scots the chance of a better future…If it’s just ‘are we independent or not?’ and the ‘not’ is just staying as we are, then I think you’ll find a lot of people will vote for independence so that they get some powers.”

Tom Farmer told the Herald on 30th May “If it was a case of the status quo and no fiscal autonomy, I don’t think I would be very happy. If the question was, quite simply, independence or no new powers I would lean towards independence.”

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