Nicola Sturgeon on Brexit: In/out EU referendum must have "double majority" rule

Joe Hall
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Sturgeon: "The Scottish government will of course make a strong and positive case for staying in the EU." (Source: Getty)

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has slammed Tory austerity measures and reaffirmed her party's commitment to staying in the EU in her first major economic speech since the election.

Speaking to business leaders at Heart of Midlothian's Tynecastle Stadium, Sturgeon said the SNP would propose a "double majority" on the vote, in which each of the UK's nations would have to vote in favour of leaving the trading bloc.

She explained:

Since a referendum is now inevitable we will work to protect Scotland's interests in that referendum.

We'll propose a double majority meaning that exit from the European Union would only be possible if all four nations agreed to that, something that would ensure that Scotland couldn't be forced out of the European Union against our will.

And during the run up to the referendum, the Scottish government will of course make a strong and positive case for staying in the EU.

"We don't think it's perfect", added the first minister, "but we believe very strongly that Scotland's interests are best served by being members of the EU."

Read more: Nicola Sturgeon’s EU mischief-making is a taste of the political blackmail to come

Speaking ahead of the Queen's Speech tomorrow, Sturgeon outlined the SNP's opposition to the government's proposed spending cuts with the "Scottish Business Pledge" which aims to promote "fairness, equality and sustainable economic growth".

She explained: "We will continue to oppose spending reductions of the scale and speed that the UK government has suggested. These would slow economic recovery and make deficit reduction more difficult - something shown by the impact of the cuts imposed after 2010."

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