Salmond's challenge: Still only 32% of Scots want independence

The latest opinion polling on the Scottish referendum question has showed that only around a third of voters would opt for full independence

by The Commentator on 3 February 2013 12:42


Almost a third of Scots have indicated that in a forthcoming referendum on the subject matter, they would support full independence for Scotland. The latest polling shows the uphll battle that Scottish National Party leader Alex Salmond faces, as result remain largely unchanged from this time last year.

The latest Angus Reid Public Opinion poll of 1,003 people was published in the Scottish Mail on Sunday, and showed that 32 percent of those quizzed said they would vote Yes if the Scottish referendum was held today, while nearly a half said they would vote No.

Also noteworthy is that one in seven Scots believe independence would make them better off financially while 38 percent thought it would leave them worse off.

The poll comes on the back of the latest announcement by The Scottish Government to change the question it will put to voters in the independence referendum. This action was reportedly taken after concerns were expressed over a potential bias towards a Yes vote.

First Minister Alex Salmond had proposed to ask: "Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country?" however the UK's Electoral Commission said using the phrase "Do you agree" was commonly felt "to be biased towards a Yes outcome".

While some have reflected upon the high 'Yes' response in the latest poll, analysts have pointed out how in January 2012, a Sunday Telegraph poll showed support for Scottish independence at 40 percent, while a Mail on Sunday poll from the very same day showed support for the move at just 26 percent.

This follows a high point of around 52 percent, as reflected by a poll from ICM in 2006. 

The recent poll put the question "Should Scotland be an independent country?", similarly worded to a YouGov poll from May 2012 that showed 33 percent support for independence.

47 percent of those quizzed this year said they would vote No while 32% would vote Yes. 20% said they were undecided.

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