Miliband to make passionate plea for Scotland to remain in the Union

Ed Miliband will make an impassioned plea to retain Scotland’s place at the top table of the UK union.

Ed Miliband will make an impassioned plea to retain Scotland’s place at the top table of the UK union.

In rallying the party faithful behind the campaign to save the union, he will steer clear of the plethora of policy disasters which have plagued Alex Salmond’s plans for independence, and will instead use the story of one party activist to drive home his message.

In 2011, Cathy Murphy from Glasgow was attending the party conference in Liverpool when she was rushed to hospital having been diagnosed with a serious heart condition the previous year. Doctors prepared her family for the worst, but she survived, and continues to attend the hospital in Liverppol for check-ups – a hospital which is blind to whereabouts in the UK she comes from.

Miliband will tell the conference:

“Let’s make sure, over the next year, we win the battle for the most important institution of all: our country.

“There are many ways to debate this issue, facts and figures, argument and counter argument. But let me just tell you one story which says it all. It’s the story of Cathy Murphy, who lives in Glasgow and works at a local supermarket.

“In 2010, she was diagnosed with a serious heart problem. She came to the Labour conference as a delegate in 2011 in Liverpool and fell seriously ill. The doctors feared the worst. They thought she would die and called her family down from Glasgow. But, somehow, they managed to stabilise her condition.”

He will continue:

“Some weeks later, they undertook a 14-hour operation at the Liverpool Broadgreen Hospital to save her life. And she pulled through and eventually returned home to Glasgow. She still works at the local supermarket.

“She comes back to Liverpool every six months for a check-up. And you know what? The doctors and nurses don’t ask whether she lives in England or Scotland. They don’t ask whether she is Scottish or English. No.”

“They know she is: Scottish and British. Cathy is with us today, back as a conference delegate. I don’t want Cathy to become a foreigner. Let’s keep our United Kingdom together.”

Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.

8 Responses to “Miliband to make passionate plea for Scotland to remain in the Union”

  1. David Carr

    Hang on a darn tootin’ minute.

    If a French, Italian, Estonian or Slovakian woman were to fall down in Liverpool or Dundee she would receive the same treatment, currently or following Independence.

    Milliband is arguing on a false premise. And he must know this. For shame!

  2. Steven Syme

    Exactly. One could easily argue that hospitals in Scotland would be better off in an Independent nation….what, with not having to subsidise the junkies in London and the South East who are a drain on Scotland’s resources. The abolition of the free market in the NHS would raise standards.

    Scots are fed up paying out 9.9% of UK taxes and getting 9.3% back, and lets not forget the 90% of the oil ( Scottish waters)

    Better Together? For whom?

  3. Bill Cruickshank

    Miliband is really scraping the barrel with this story. It is becoming more and more obvious that the Westminster establishment, London hacks and the BBC just don’t get the movement for Scottish self determination. Tugging unionist heart strings is a busted flush, Miliband would be as well playing the theme tune from “The Dambusters” as pulling a ‘story’ like this out of the bag. Scots want to govern themselves, a fact demonstrated by the 20,000 people on the March and Rally for Scottish self determination in Edinburgh on Saturday (a figure confirmed by the Scottish police federation and the equivalent of 200,000 people on the streets of London; a march which was almost completely ignored by the pro-union BBC).
    Scotland will vote YES next year because most Scots have had enough of being treated like colonials, have had enough of their natural resources being used for foreign and illegal wars, have had enough of Westminster cuts and misrule and had enough of Trident on the Clyde.
    Tell Ed he really must do better!

  4. George

    Only because it benefits labour

  5. franwhi

    What a puzzling moral fable. Does Ed actually have any knowledge of Scotland ? The NHS in Scotland is already run by the Scottish Govt. It employs and treats people from all over the world – It’s a universal service and will remain so probably a lot longer than NHS England the way things are going. How would Cathy become a foreigner ? Because she has medical treatment at home ? because the hospital food in Liverpool makes her less Glaswegian ?
    What a lot of patronising guff and poor Cathy being used as a “Jennifer’s Ear”. Maybe it was attendance at the Labour Conference which actually provoked her condition in the first place – Eh Ed ?

  6. Alister Rutherford

    Interesting that Milliband had gone for this emotional stuff. Apart from the fact that he is just plain wrong in the issue, it would seem to confirm that he has no rational arguments for preserving the Union.

  7. Ben1969

    Shocking if true, that the hospitals in Scotland are so primitive or under-resourced, that someone living in Glasgow has to go to Liverpool every 6 months for a check-up. Who is to blame for the lack of cardio health facilities in Scotland?

  8. uglyfatbloke

    Ed is on shaky constitutional ground here…according to both the Tories and Labour spokespersons, Scotland does not have an identity at all, but was subsumed into an enlarged and re-named England in 1707, so Scotland is hardly at the ‘top table’ of the UK.
    If this is to be the standard of campaigning material, what’s the point?

Leave a Reply