Scottish Tories urge voters to back Alex Salmond's Alba Party in Holyrood election
- Credit: POOL/AFP via Getty Images
A group of Scottish Tories who want Scotland to have access to the EU single market are urging voters at the Holyrood election to cast their second vote for Alex Salmond's Alba Party.
Scottish Yes Tories say around 15% of their members voted Yes in 2014 - a number they say has been steadily growing since the Brexit poll in 2016, The National reports.
In a statement on social media, they said: "Our aim is to see Scotland have access to the Single European Market as soon as possible and that is why for this next election we are asking our party voters to vote Scottish Conservative 1 and Alba Party 2.
"Whereas the SNP policy is for full EU membership the Alba Party seems to support the [European Free Trade Association] EFTA and [European Economic Area] EEA membership first and that appears to be the fastest route to re-enter the Single European Market.
"Scottish exporters are hurting following Brexit and EEA membership would help repair that damage."
Members of the group have been barred from interviews with the press but several have said support for independence was rising within the party.
"Ruth Davidson warned all party members that if any Scottish Conservative openly supported independence we would be thrown out of the party," said our source.
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Kenny MacAskill, who was with the SNP for 40 years before joining the Alba Party last month, said Salmond's party would back EEA and EFTA membership over full EU access.
“Our aim has always been to support any means to get Scotland back into the European Single Market. That is why we have agreed to support Scottish Conservatives 1 and Alba 2, as we believe Alba supports Scottish membership into EFTA and EEA and that would fulfil our main aim.
“We believe that support within Scottish Conservative voters has risen around 30% for some sort of independence.
“This should not surprise anyone as in Edinburgh Central 75% of our voters voted Remain in the EU referendum.”
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