The leader of the SNP, Nicola Sturgeon, “categorically” ruled out any coalition with the Labour Party ahead of next week’s general election in an interview with ITV’s Robert Peston. It comes as Ms Sturgeon set out the preconditions on which Labour would have to accept should they gain the support of the SNP to secure a minority government.
The stance from both leaders has hitherto been murky - with Mr Corbyn and Ms Sturgeon both setting out conflicting claims.
Attempting to clear the waters, Peston asked Ms Sturgeon: “We’re in a remarkable period where if you look at the polls, in the three percent margin of error, we could be looking next Thursday at something that’s quite close to a landslide for Boris Johnson.
“Or, we could be looking at a government that would see Jeremy Corbyn probably as Prime Minister in Downing Street.
“Can I just ask you, very, very explicitly, because I’m not sure you have said this: Are you saying categorically, that although you could support a Labour Government by perhaps a confidence and supply agreement, the kind of thing the DUP arranged with the Tories, you categorically are ruling out a formal coalition?
Nicola Sturgeon ruled out a coalition with Labour (Image: ITV)
Sturgeon said she preferred a progressive alliance (Image: ITV)
Ms Sturgeon replied: “Yes.”
A deafening silence ensued, with Peston seemingly dumbstruck and at a loss as to what to say.
He said: “So, that’s a straightforward yes?”
Ms Sturgeon laughed, and said: “I know that’s probably taken you by surprise that a politician has answered a question so bluntly.
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A hung Parliament is a prospect ahead of the general election (Image: ITV)
“But, yes, the SNP will not go into a formal coalition, but we want to lock Boris Johnson out of Downing Street if we possibly can.
“I hope the SNP can actually play a big part in that because the SNP are the main challengers in every Tory held seat in Scotland.