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Scottish independence vote too close to call on election eve

On the eve of Scotland’s historic vote for independence, it’s still unclear whether 4 million projected voters will decide to stay with the United Kingdom or break the union. Gary Gibbon of Independent Television News follows both campaigns for a look at their last chance to sway undecided Scots, while Dan Rivers talks to voters in the Highlands.

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  • GWEN IFILL:

    We're on the eve of one of the biggest moments in Scottish history, as more than four million people get ready to head to the polls and decide whether to stay part of the United Kingdom or break away. Polls show the vote is too close to call.

    Gary Gibbon of Independent Television News followed the campaigns in their last day.

  • GARY GIBBON:

    A yes rally in Glasgow city center. Down the road, Gordon Brown fires up the no campaigns.

    First Minister Alex Salmond is flitting around Scotland. On the ground, his army of activists work relentlessly to get the message across. At the heart of this campaign has been an argument about the best way Scots can get social justice.

  • GORDON BROWN, Former Prime Minister, United Kingdom:

    The vote tomorrow is whether you want to break and sever every link, and I say let's keep our U.K. pension. Let's keep our U.K. pound. Let's keep our U.K. passport. Let's keep our U.K. welfare state.

    (CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

  • GARY GIBBON:

    Gordon Brown said separatism was the enemy of social justice. The actress Elaine C. Smith said the yes campaign had given hope to people in the poorest housing estates or schemes.

  • ELAINE C. SMITH, Actress:

    All the schemes across Scotland who are motivated and finally have something to vote for and something to hope for.

    (CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

  • GARY GIBBON:

    Passions were high on the eve of electoral battle. But there is dread on both sides, too.

  • MAN:

    Can you imagine running in a battle, fighting for a cause, fighting for your country, and your lungs will be filled with fear, with trepidation, excitement?

  • GARY GIBBON:

    This is "Braveheart" stuff.

  • MAN:

    This is what's happening for us. Of course, it's a political decision, but it's also an emotional decision that you can change your country.

  • GARY GIBBON:

    When someone is as emotionally charged as you are about this decision, I wonder, what happens if it's a no?

  • MAN:

    I will be depressed. That's what I will be. I will be ashamed of my country.

  • GORDON BROWN:

    Let us tell the nationalists, this is not their flag, their country, their culture, their streets. This is everyone's flag, everyone's country, everyone's culture, and everyone's streets.

    (CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

  • GARY GIBBON:

    Gordon Brown told supporters to hold their heads up high and not be cowed by the yes campaign.

    Someone put stickers on…

  • WOMAN:

    They put these on my windows to cover up my no sign.

  • GARY GIBBON:

    And do you think — do you think there's a silent majority for no that's been quiet and doesn't want to come out?

  • WOMAN:

    Yes, I do, because I feel they feel intimidated. They're frightened. A lot of the pensioners — I'm a pensioner — that live up beside me were frightened to put the signs in their windows, although they told me they're no votes.

  • GARY GIBBON:

    And if there would be a narrow yes victory on Friday?

  • WOMAN:

    How am I going to feel?

  • GARY GIBBON:

    Yes. How would you feel then?

  • WOMAN:

    Absolutely, completely devastated, so much so that I would even think about leaving Scotland. And I love this country so dearly.

  • GARY GIBBON:

    Scotland tonight is a country fired up, engaged, but also uneasy as it edges towards its date with destiny.

  • GWEN IFILL:

    Another ITN correspondent headed north to the highlands of Scotland.

    Dan Rivers asked voters how they will be voting, with their heads or with their hearts?

  • DAN RIVERS:

    It is one of the most sparsely populated places in Europe and surely one of the most sublime. In this emptied land Burns called the birthplace of valor, the country of worth, there might be solitude, but there is no escaping the debate.

    We're traveling across this epic landscape to see how the highlands are facing a momentous decision. Near Abbeymoore, fly-fishing instructor Jim Cornfoot is about to make the most important cast of his life, his vote for yes tomorrow.

  • JIM CORNFOOT:

    I have been looking forward to this for — well, most of my working life, you know? We have got something to aim for. It won't be easy, but (INAUDIBLE) means, but if everybody pulls together, better — better conditions for everybody.

  • DAN RIVERS:

    But Ian Chisholm isn't convinced. A purveyor of highland dress, he's patriotic, but cautious.

  • IAN CHISHOLM:

    Still undecided, Dan. I think it's going to go right to the rope.

  • DAN RIVERS:

    A last push in Inverness by the Better Together campaign.

  • RHODA GRANT, Better Together:

    Reaction on the street is good. People are supportive. Our vote appears to be solid.

  • DAN RIVERS:

    But the Yes Scotland campaign is also upbeat, claiming the winds of change are about to blow through the highlands.

    Here in one of the most beautiful and remote parts of Scotland, many people feel disillusioned with the politics of Westminster. The yes campaign is gaining ground here, but it's still going to be a close-run thing.

    And with increased devolution being offered by the unionists, that alienation might not necessarily translate into people voting yes and taking the plunge for independence.

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