Scotland's Battle for Freedom Kicks Off

'Yes for Scotland' campaign targets 2014 vote

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted May 25, 2012 4:31 AM CDT | Updated May 25, 2012 5:17 AM CDT

(Newser) – Supporters of Scottish independence are about to officially kick off their campaign to end the country's 305-year-old marriage to England and Wales. The "Yes for Scotland" drive is being spearheaded by Scottish National Party leader Alex Salmond, whose party won a majority in Scottish elections last years, reports Reuters. His party wants the independence referendum to be held in 2014, on the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn, in which a small force led by Robert the Bruce defeated a much bigger English force.

"People are more open to this than they have ever been before," declared a spokesman for the independence campaign. "It is fundamentally better for our future if decisions about Scotland are taken by the people who care about it the most." But in an apparent attempt to undermine the launch of the independence campaign, which will happen at a celebrity-packed event in Edinburgh today, former Chancellor Alistair Darling has released a new poll saying only 33% of Scots plan to vote for independence, while 57% say they'll reject it, the Guardian reports.

A display of t-shirts are seen for sale in a Scottish memorabilia shop in Edinburgh.   (AP Photo/Scott Heppell)
A Scottish Saltire flag blows in the wind near the statue of Scottish King Robert the Bruce, at Bannockburn, Scotland.   (AP Photo / Chris Clark)
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