Maija Palmer Vox Scots: Salmond did better on rhetoric this time

Alex Salmond’s impassioned plea for Scottish independence may have won over unsure voters, say our Scottish reader panel. As a snap poll by Guardian/ICM found Mr Salmond to have won Monday night’s television debate by a margin of 71 per cent to 29 per cent, even our panellists in the No camp had to admit that Scotland’s first minister had been the better speaker.

 

Started as undecided, now voting Yes

Susan Wilkinson

Employed in the private sector

44

Fife

“Having watched Facebook tonight as the debate went on, I saw unsure voters changing to a Yes vote. “

Although I had decided yes already, I now have no doubts. Salmond more than answered Darling’s point on the currency, oil and the NHS. Darling plainly knew he had lost, especially when he developed a stutter as he tried to railroad through Salmond’s answers.

I do feel that the Chair should have controlled the debate better to let both speakers answer without being talked over by the questioner. It was almost impossible to hear the answers over the badgering on both sides. I found Darling much more badgering and refusing to answer reasonable questions.

The lady in the audience who called Darling out was absolutely right. Having watched Facebook tonight as the debate went on, I saw unsure voters changing to a Yes vote. Darling made a huge mistake by battering on about the currency again. We all know that any oil is a good thing and it’s been wasted by Westminster.

 

Pro-union

Jill Stephenson

Retired professor of history

70

Edinburgh

“Salmond still hasn’t given a straight answer about currency. “

Darling had difficulty in making himself heard at times, because Salmond interrupted and blustered, and the moderator wasn’t in control. Salmond still hasn’t given a straight answer about currency. His accusations about NHS ‘privatisation’ have been shown to be entirely false, so he couldn’t get much mileage out of that. His star witness (Dr Philippa Whitford) was discredited in the Scottish press today.

The best Brian Taylor (BBC Scotland) can say is that Salmond did better than last time. He reckons there was no outright winner, but yessers will feel better than they did last time.

 

 

Pro-union

Andrew Veitch

Entrepreneur

41

Edinburgh

“Salmond did much better this time in terms of rhetoric. Darling’s case was intellectually stronger. “

Salmond did much better this time in terms of rhetoric. Darling’s case was intellectually stronger but it is very hard to explain to an audience the importance of having a central bank and a lender of last resort.

The strategic mistake Salmond has made is to argue so passionately in support of the pound, the Bank of England and even the concept of Scotland’s budget being approved by London. If he is right on this then it is an argument to vote No.

 

Pro-Independence and an active campaigner for Business for Scotland

Ivan McKee

Owner of a manufacturing business

50

Glasgow

“The best question was: “If we are Better Together then why aren’t we better together just now”. There is no answer to that and people in Scotland will understand that and vote accordingly. “

I think there is no doubt that the debate tonight was a clear victory for the Yes campaign. The issues that people care about – the future of the NHS, poverty and inequality, the waste of money on nuclear weapons – all of these were to the fore and the No campaign had no answers.

The message from Alex Salmond was positive, showing what Scotland could become if independent, compared to what awaits us if we stay as part of the Union. Alistair Darling was bumbling through his answers, unable to give a positive case for the Union (there isn’t one), spending his time defending the actions of Westminster governments, not interested in what is best for the people of Scotland.

The best question was: “If we are Better Together then why aren’t we better together just now”. There is no answer to that and people in Scotland will understand that and vote accordingly.