SNP launch listening project to gauge voters views

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Strathkelvin and Bearsden MSP Rona Mackay has welcomed measures announced by Nicola Sturgeon in a major speech in Stirling this week.

Constituents are being encouraged to take part in what has been called the biggest listening exercise in the party’s history.

The first phase in the SNP’s new independence initiative will reach out to two million people in Scotland before St Andrew’s Day — seeking to gain a nationwide understanding of people’s views on Europe, Brexit and independence to grow consensus across Scotland in the wake of recent political events.

Equipped with a new national survey, each of the SNP’s 120,000 members will be challenged to engage with five people each month for the next three months, alongside doorstep activism across the country and all SNP parliamentarians hosting town hall events throughout Scotland.

Rona Mackay said: “I was incredibly inspired by the speech Nicola Sturgeon gave outlining the continuation of competent actions to protect Scotland. I am very confident about the future of our country.

“The people of Strathkelvin and Bearsden can rest assured my SNP parliamentarians and I will not be dithering, like the Tories have been, over the future of the United Kingdom post-Brexit. I welcome all of the concrete measures that have led up to this day, and am excited by the new ones announced.

“Our place in Europe will be protected and we know now the circumstances of the 2014 referendum have changed entirely. This sea-change in Scottish politics thrusts forward the question of Scotland becoming an independent nation.”

Nicola Sturgeon said: “The UK that Scotland vote to stay part of in 2014 has changed — and so too have the arguments. That’s why I believe it is right that our party does now lead a new debate on independence.

“We must not assume that people’s views — yes or no — are the same today as they were in 2014. Instead we must engage the arguments with a fresh eye and an open mind. And before we start talking we must listen.

“So today, we are launching the biggest listening exercise in our party’s history. We want to understand in detail how people feel now about Europe, Brexit and independence. We want to know the concerns that people have and the questions they want answered. We want to build, if we can, a consensus on the way ahead.”