Scotsman, FT and Spectator back No vote ahead of Scottish independence referendum

The Scotsman and Financial Times have declared support for a No vote ahead of next week's Scottish independence referendum.

In May, the Sunday Herald became the first newspaper publicly to back a Yes vote in the Scottish referendum.

The Spectator magazine's front cover this week says: "Scotland, please stay". And editor Fraser Nelson has revealed he will be handing out free copies of the weekly political title in Edinburgh this morning.

The Scottish newspaper's front page carries the headline: "Scotland's Decision" and declares: "With exactly a week to go before our historic referendum The Scotsman gives its verdict on the choice before us: we are better together."

In an 2,000-word editorial, the newspaper points to arguments on the issues of currency, EU membership and defence as it sets out the reasons behind its decision to back the pro-Union stance.

It concludes that Scotland has succeeded in being a "prosperous, peaceful, successful country" as part of the UK.

The article continues: "So, with the choices before us, the conclusion is that we are better together, that Scotland's best interests lie not in creating division but in continuing in the Union and using its strengths to help us continue in our success.

"That is not a view taken because of fear, or lack of confidence, or lack of patriotism. It is the very opposite. It is not a view that simply does not want to take risk.

"It is a measured view that assesses risk against possible benefit and loss. It is seeing where the best interests of the Scottish people lie, understanding the benefits of working with the people in these islands in collaboration and partnership and seeing the opportunity to shape the strongest, most secure, fair and just society that we all want."

Meanwhile, the FT's editorial claims "the case for union is overwhelming", citing trepidation in the financial markets and "inconsistencies" in the Yes argument.

The article reads: "Empires and nation states are not immune to break-up, but there is little precedent for a hitherto stable modern democracy splitting in peacetime, in the middle of an economic recovery. This is not the time for recrimination. For the moment it is enough for this newspaper to declare that the path of separation is a fool's errand, one fraught with danger and uncertainty.

"The only certainty is uncertainty,at a high cost to Scotland and the UK. The shift of deposits and money out of Scotland this week is a harbinger."

It concludes: "The Union is something precious, not a bauble to be cast aside. In a week's time, the Scots can vote with a sense of ambition to build on those success. Rather than retreat into tribalism, they can continue to be part of a nation rooted not just in history and culture but a common destiny which over three centuries has served so well."

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