Latest push for referendum votes

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Published: Saturday 13th September 2014 by The News Editor

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Both sides of the Scottish independence debate will make their latest push for votes as the final weekend of campaigning gets under way.

Yes Scotland is promising what it called the biggest day of national campaigning ever seen in the country, with some 2.6 million leaflets being delivered to households in the space of 48 hours.

For the No camp, Labour big-hitters former prime minister Gordon Brown and shadow Scottish secretary Margaret Curran will be addressing voters in the east of the country.

Elsewhere, the Orange Order will hold a “Proud to be British” rally i n Edinburgh in support of the Union, with organisers expecting more than 10,000 people to attend.

The weekend push for support at the ballot box comes after a leading bank warned that the financial and economic arguments against independence are “overwhelming” and compared a Yes vote to the mistakes which led to the Great Depression.

The chief economist at Deutsche Bank, David Folkerts-Landau, said voters and politicians had failed to grasp the potential severity of the negative consequences of independence.

The Scottish Government accused him of failing to take into account Scotland’s ”strong fiscal position”, and said it would start life as an independent nation ”from stronger economic foundations than any other nation in history”.

Today, the Deputy First Minister urged people to “believe in themselves and in Scotland” by voting Yes and not letting what she termed the opportunity of a lifetime pass them by.

Nicola Sturgeon, who will be in Glasgow, said the Yes side will focus on Scotland’s wealth, job-creating powers and the NHS in the final weekend of campaigning.

She said: “The Yes campaign has been carried along by a flourishing of self-confidence among people in Scotland. This means we can say with certainty to people still making up their mind: ‘Let’s do this.’

“That momentum is still growing and will soon become unstoppable, as people reject the Downing Street-orchestrated campaign to talk Scotland down.

“David Cameron’s Number 10-inspired scare stories are being knocked down one by one – people simply do not believe them.”

Ms Sturgeon said Scotland is one of the world’s richest countries, being wealthier per head of population than the UK, France and Japan.

“The great opportunity of independence is that we’ll be able to design an economic policy tailored to our needs so that Scotland’s wealth works for the many and not just the few,” she said.

“More and more people are waking up to the opportunities of Yes which is why momentum is with this campaign.”

Overall, the Yes side expect to have more than 35,000 volunteers on the streets of Scotland this weekend, manning 473 registered street stalls.

In the Scottish capital, the Orange Order will hold a rally to demonstrate its commitment to Scotland remaining in the United Kingdom.

Organisers said they believe that the Union has been good for Scotland and that independence will have “catastrophic social and economic consequences”.

Henry Dunbar, grand master of the Orange Order in Scotland, is expected to tell marchers: “The No campaign has been criticised for not showing enough passion for the Union – well look out, here comes some passion.

“We are the Orangemen and women of Scotland and we are passionate about our Queen and country.

“The Union is stable, strong, tolerant and prosperous – to destroy it would be unforgiveable.

“Together we have created a country that is the envy of the world. Unity is strength, and the best way of securing our future is for Scotland to remain an active and enthusiastic member of the most successful political union in history.”

The parade route will take in the Meadows, George IV Bridge, the Royal Mile and terminate near Abbeyhill.

Elsewhere in the country, political figures such as Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie, party veteran Baroness Shirley Williams and Scottish Labour’s deputy leader Anas Sarwar will be among those promoting the No campaign’s pro-UK message.

Published: Saturday 13th September 2014 by The News Editor

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