LONDON (Reuters) - British Labour Party leader Ed Miliband said on Thursday he’d rather stay in opposition than do a deal with Scottish nationalists after a close national election next week in which no party is expected to win a majority.
Opinion polls show the pro-independence Scottish National Party (SNP) is on track to wipe out Labour in Scotland making it harder for the left-wing party to secure an overall majority in the 650-seat Westminster Parliament.
The SNP has offered to support a minority Labour government, a prospect that Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservatives have described as a nightmare that would see Scots nationalists wielding influence in a country they want to break up.
“Let me be plain, we are not going to do a deal with the Scottish National Party,” Miliband told an audience on BBC TV.
“If it meant we weren’t going to be in government, not doing a coalition, not doing a deal, then so be it. I am not going to have a Labour government if it means deals or coalitions with the Scottish National Party.”
Reporting by Andrew Osborn and Kylie MacLellan; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge