NICOLA STURGEON was stunned during the BBC Scotland Leaders Debate when she was accused of placing a second independence referendum as her “first, second, third and fourth priority” over public issues.
With just two days until the general election, the leaders of the Scottish Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats and SNP faced questions from a live audience. First Minister and leader of the SNP, Nicola Sturgeon, found herself in the hot seat with Jackson Carlaw over prioritising Scottish independence over jobs and the health service. Mr Carlaw has been serving as the Acting Leader of the Scottish Conservatives since August this year after Ruth Davidson stepped down.
The Scottish Tory mocked Ms Sturgeon’s enthusiasm for a second independence referendum, claiming she would campaign for a third one if she lost again.
He said: “Part of the issue of not trusting politicians is because, in the absence of being able to get anything done, people have become incredibly frustrated.
“Nicola Sturgeon doesn’t accept the outcome of referendums.
“She’s already said if she didn’t win a second referendum on Brexit, she wouldn’t accept it.”
He asked the audience: “Does anybody here believe if she lost a second independence referendum, she wouldn’t then start the campaign for a third?
“My argument would be that we’ve spent all this time and division talking about the constitution.
“What powers do the Scottish Parliament have?
“It has powers over education, powers over health, powers over justice, powers over our economy.”
Mr Carlaw continued: “And it’s those public services that are currently suffering because Nicola Sturgeon’s first, second, third and fourth priority is the constitution.
“It’s not your jobs, not your health service, not your schools and not the Scottish economy.
“That’s what we need to concentrate on.”
In her closing statement, Ms Sturgeon said: “On Thursday, Scotland’s future is on the line.
“A Tory Government will mean a hard Brexit.
“Jobs will be at risk, child poverty will rise and the NHS will be on the line.
“It will mean a Prime Minister who has shown himself to be untrustworthy and not fit for office.
“Scotland can help stop all of that. A vote for the SNP can lock Boris Johnson out of Downing Street and provide an escape route for Brexit, and it will put Scotland future into Scotland’s hands so that we can build a better future.”