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Scots want to keep the pound

Scots are overwhelmingly in favour of keeping the pound in the event of independence, with Labour voters the most keen to remain in a sterling zone, research has found.

According to a YouGov poll commissioned by the SNP, Scots prefer by 66% to 19% the idea of retaining the pound as the currency of an independent Scotland. Of those asked, 15% were undecided about which currency they would like to use in the event of a Yes vote next year.

The poll of just over 1000 voters, carried out over the first three days of the month, asked the question: "Do you think an independent Scotland should or should not keep the pound?"

The results were replicated across supporters of all political parties, with Labour voters most in favour of keeping the pound.

Among Labour voters the figures were 71% in favour, 19% against, with 10% undecided.

Among SNP voters polled, the equivalent figures were 69% in favour, 18% against and 13% saying they did not know.

Among Tory voters the figures were 62% for, 27% against, and 11% undecided; for LibDem voters the figures were 64% in favour, 28% against and 8% undecided.

An SNP spokesman said: "The pound is Scotland's currency every bit as much as the rest of the UK's, and Westminster's threats have clearly backfired.

"An overwhelming majority of people in Scotland– including Labour, Tory and Lib Dem voters – believe that an independent Scotland should keep the pound."

He added: "That means Scotland having control of all our revenues and taxation policy, so that economic policy is decided by the Scottish Parliament and Government, not by George Osborne. Even the chairman of the No campaign, Alistair Darling, said that a currency union after independence was desirable and logical."

A spokesman for the pro-Union Better Together campaign mocked the poll as "desperate" and said: "We are glad that the SNP campaign has finally seen sense and now agrees with us. The only way to keep the pound is to stay in the United Kingdom."

The poll also demonstrated scepticism among Scots voters about the prospects for enhanced devolution powers in the event of a No vote.

The same poll also found that a majority of those asked thought that the No campaign should hand back the controversial donation from oil trader boss Ian Taylor.

It found that 43% of respondents thought the Vitol boss's £500,000 donation should be handed back, compared to 34% who did not agree and 23% who were undecided.

On the issue of pre-negotiations between Westminster and Holyrood so that Scots had a clearer picture of what they would be voting for in the referendum, Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: "Westminster's refusal to enter into pre-referendum discussions so that they can help inform the debate is out of touch with the people."

Contextual targeting label: 
Local government

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