The SNP moved swiftly on the first day of its annual conference to rule out a so-called “plan B” route to independence.
Members voted against a resolution by Inverclyde councillor Chris McEleny which said “a pro-independence majority” at the next election should be considered as a mandate for talks to begin with the UK Government over an independent Scotland, by-passing the need for a second referendum.
There were boos among some delegates as Mr McEleny made his way to the podium.
Westminster leader Ian Blackford warned members not to back proposals by-passing a referendum in his speech opening conference yesterday afternoon.
He said: “When you hear talk of a so-called plan B, I ask you to consider this – the time to talk of a plan B is not when plan A has momentum.
“Make no mistake – with rising support for independence and a general election on the horizon – we have that momentum.
“You know, plan Bs are by definition second best, that’s why our opponents would love us to shift on to that ground – it concedes their right to block the best route to independence.
“And they will always settle for second best for Scotland. But we never should.
“When it comes to choosing Scotland’s future, we should demand and win the gold standard for democracy and for our country.”
Tweeting after the resolution was defeated, Mr McEleny said: “Time will tell whether or not we do need a plan B, but the day an SNP representative decides not to progress an argument they believe in just because they’re scared it might not be popular is the day we are worse off as a party, so I’m not down-beaten by the outcome.”