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In the closest General Election campaign in living memory, Scotland moves from being a traditional backwater of British politics looks set to be the most uncertain battlefield of all. Before moving on to the individual seats to look at it is important to underline how uncertain the final result in Scotland is likely to be. In its latest Nowcast, YouGov has fully three fifths of Scotland’s seats in the too close to call category. So without too much further adieu these are my seven seats to watch although please note that none of them are in Glasgow because the SNP will rule them all.

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Much has been written about the backlash to David Cameron’s remarkably ill-advised intervention in the simmering debate about the precise nature of the referendum on Scottish Independence. Many have like Simon commented on the strange complacency that is present in the Unionist camp.  What has been less noticed is the remarkable amount of conservatism  in the debate. In what is a fundamentally a debate about constitutional reform, there was little consideration about ways that the Union could be renewed through constitutional reform. This could be best seen in the demented denunciation of “Devo Max” by Unionists due to the belief that its just a ruse adopted by an Alex Salmond in need of a consolation prize should the Scots (as is probable) reject independence.

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On the face of it the referendum on Scottish independence should be one of the least terrifying prospects in modern British politics. Granted there are huge risks for those of us who believe in continued political union between the four historic nations, an in-out referendum would lead to the end of the UK or the SNP. But at the moment the signs point to a rejection of independence.   Firstly all the polling data shows a clear majority in favour of the status quo.  Furthermore people are usually inherently conservative when it comes to referenda, as it gets closer to polling day more people adhere to Belloc’s aphorism of clinging to nurse for fear of something worse – as seen in rejections of an Australian republic, Spain’s membership of NATO and AV in British general elections. This sense is only heightened by the economic wastelands that are other small Northwest European nations, Iceland and Ireland, and the fear of what RBS could have done to Scottish balance sheets. Despite these manifest reasons for optimism the current political landscape has the seed of the union’s destruction and all of these have complacency at their roots.

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