UK & World News

  • 25 August 2014, 18:17

Leaders Meet For Second TV Debate On Scotland

The two protagonists in Scotland's referendum campaign are preparing to face each other for a second live TV debate.

North Sea oil wealth, currency and the National Health Service are expected to form the battleground when Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling go head-to-head.

The two men will clash before a public audience at Glasgow's Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery. It will be broadcast live on Sky News.

The BBC debate follows their first live television encounter on August 5.

In that debate Mr Darling - the former Chancellor and leader of the pro-Union Better Together campaign - was widely judged to have won the contest.

In particular, he quizzed Alex Salmond on his currency plans for an independent Scotland. 

All three main parties have ruled out Mr Salmond's preferred option of a formal currency union with the remainder of the UK.

Mr Darling told Sky News: "The biggest single thing that was clear was that Alex Salmond doesn't know what his plan B is, or else he's not telling us.

"We need to know what currency we'll be using, what the money in our pocket would be worth and we need to know what plan B is.

"He says he's got options but he won't tell us."

The 'No' campaign strategists say they intend to expose Mr Salmond as a man with no credible vision on the key issues of independence.

The 'Yes' camp say their emphasis will be on the message as much as the messenger.

A spokesman told Sky News that Mr Darling may have cheered up his supporters with his first-round performance - but what matters is what undecided voters think.

To that extent, Mr Salmond will fix his attention on the viewer as well as his debating opponent.

Mr Salmond told Sky News: "We're still behind, we've still got persuading to do.

"So my appeal and strategy for the debate is not just to score points in the debate, it's to get across to people in their living rooms and their homes... particularly people who are just waiting for that extra reason to vote yes for Scotland."

 

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