• MySTV

Better Together urged to reveal what No vote would mean for Scotland

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has urged Better Together campaign to reveal what No vote in referendum would mean for Scotland.

Nicola Sturgeon

The pro-UK Better Together campaign must set out in detail what a No vote in the independence referendum would mean for Scotland, according to Nicola Sturgeon.

The Scottish Government has provided "a compelling case for independence" in its Scotland's Future white paper, and unionists must respond with a competing vision, the deputy First Minister said in a speech at St Andrews University on Monday.

The speech has been described as the "curtain-raiser" to the 2014 independence campaign as the referendum approaches on September 18.

Speaking ahead of the St Andrews address, Ms Sturgeon said: "The referendum is not a choice between change and no change.

"It is about choosing the kind of change we want for Scotland and who we want to be in the driving seat of it, ourselves, or Westminster. It is a choice between two futures.

"That means that the consequences of both a Yes vote and No vote need to be considered carefully. And that means both the Yes and the No campaigns have an obligation to inform.

"Those of us on the Yes side take that responsibility seriously. In November, the Scottish Government published the independence white paper, Scotland's Future, setting out the practicalities and opportunities of what will happen if Scotland votes Yes.

"I believe it sets out a compelling case for independence. It gives robust, credible and common sense answers to the legitimate questions that people have.

"I am happy to let you - the Scottish people - be the judge of it.

"But to make an informed choice between these two futures, you also need to know what a No vote will mean for Scotland.

"Now, as we enter this next, vital phase of the campaign, it is time for the No campaign to spell that out in detail to allow you to compare and contrast the competing visions for the future of Scotland and make your own minds up."

She stated that anecdotal evidence suggested there was already "a pronounced movement" away from a no vote among traditional Labour supporters.

During a speech to an audience composed of members of the public, university academics and staff, she argued that the "transformational potential of independence" was the "over-riding" reason to vote yes on September 18.

"And it should be a reason to vote yes, regardless of what party you vote for," Ms Sturgeon said.

She continued: "We all want Scotland to succeed - no party has a monopoly on that ambition.

"If you accept the principle that the best way of ensuring success is to give ourselves the powers that help determine it, then it doesn't matter whether or not you support the SNP or our specific plans for using those powers."

Ms Sturgeon said party loyalty should not be a "decisive factor" in the debate.

She added that while persuading Labour voters was not "an exclusive focus" of the Yes campaign as the referendum approaches, "arithmetic and the political shape of Scotland would determine that we would want to convince traditional Labour supporters to vote yes".

Ms Sturgeon said: "The argument that is very powerful with Labour voters is the argument of making sure that we have the ability in Scotland to have the kind of economy and society that we want to have, and not one that is determined by Tory governments that we don't vote for.

"That is hugely powerful for Labour."

She added: "I struggle to understand why a Labour politician would prefer to have a Tory prime minister in Downing Street than have a Labour prime minister in Edinburgh."

The Deputy First Minister also reiterated calls for the unionist campaign, or the UK Government, to produce its own version of the white paper, setting out Scotland's future if it remains in the UK.

"There are many questions that need to be answered by the no campaign," she said.

A Better Together Spokesman said: "The SNP are the ones saying that we should take the risky step of leaving the UK, but they cannot even answer the most basic questions like what currency we would use if we go it alone.

"People understand that devolution inside the UK works for Scotland. We have the best of both worlds.

"Our Scottish Parliament allows us to make decisions on the areas that matter most like health, education and childcare, and we get the strength and security of being part of one of the world's biggest economies.

"Why should we trade the success of devolution for the risk and uncertainty of independence?"

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
Forgot password?
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This must be at least 6 characters long.
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long.
You must be over 16 to join STV.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
We need this to check that you live in an STV region.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid postcode
Would you like us to email you about our great shows and services from time to time?
We'll only send emails we think you'll like (see example) based on information you have supplied and shows you have watched on STV Player. For details on emails and advertising, see our STV & You page.
Would you like to receive emails from the Scottish Children's Lottery about draws, instant games and competitions?
We support the Scottish Children's Lottery (SCL), which is managed by our colleagues at STV ELM Ltd. You can find out more about the SCL on its website, including its Privacy Policy.

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, and understand our Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.


We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.


Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.


Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.



Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.