LINLITHGOW – Alex Salmond said David Cameron's position as prime minister is "certainly precarious, potentially untenable" as the campaign for Scottish independence enters its final days.
Scotland's first minister told BuzzFeed News that the prime minister is already under pressure and will struggle to keep his job in the event of a Yes vote in Thursday's referendum, because Tory MPs will have little time for a man who presided over the separation of the UK.
"I think in the Conservative party in these circumstances there's precious little sentiment," Salmond said.
"My expectation has always been that I would negotiate with David Cameron after a Yes vote. But given the dismal nature of the campaign he's fought – refusing to debate in Scotland, before trying to orchestrate a scare campaign and coming up to approved meetings, etc – I think he's going to come under huge pressure.
"He's in a very weak position – not just because Scotland is going to vote Yes, which I think it is – but because of the campaign he's fought.
"You can't come up here and say, 'What a wonderful people you are,' and then get caught out trying to orchestrate a fear campaign in Downing Street. That is very dismal politics."
Cameron has repeatedly insisted he will not stand down in the event of a Yes vote and would instead work with Salmond to separate the UK into two sovereign states.
But Salmond said the only way for Cameron to "save his position, if not the campaign" is for the prime minister to indicate that he will commit wholeheartedly to a clause in the agreement governing the referendum which states that both the UK and Scottish governments will govern "in the best interests of the people of Scotland and of the rest of the United Kingdom".
Salmond spoke following a relatively low-key visit to his hometown, Linlithgow, which lies around 20 miles from Edinburgh. During the visit he stood on the steps of Burgh Hall and – in a nod to the local nickname – declared himself an authentic "black bitch, not a fake one from Edinburgh".
He also attacked London's "metropolitan media" for writing off the Yes campaign at an early stage.
When a member of the crowd wearing multiple Yes Scotland badges begged him to "get rid of Cameron", the first minister told him to "wait until next week".
Salmond, speaking outside the So Strawberry café in the town centre, told BuzzFeed News that he was finding time to time to relax, having attended what he described as a pro-independence "pop concert" featuring Franz Ferdinand last night.
Is he a fan of post-rock band Mogwai, who were also on the bill?
"Yeah, I thought they were a bit quiet," he said.
Jim Waterson is a politics editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact Jim Waterson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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