The exchanges between SNP chief Ms Sturgeon and her essential rivals happened lower than 36 hours earlier than voters begin to go to the polls.
The TV showdown, broadcast on BBC Scotland, noticed the leaders of the 5 largest events debate points starting from coronavirus to the care system and taxation.
Ms Sturgeon rejected the accusation that an SNP-led Scottish Authorities would maintain an “unlawful wildcat referendum”.
Responding to the assertion of Scottish Tory chief Douglas Ross, the First Minister mentioned: “No we cannot. I’ve at all times mentioned that, Douglas.”
She added: “I do know Douglas that your marketing campaign has maybe not been essentially the most profitable marketing campaign, however do not begin to problem smears and simply inform untruths about my place and what I’ve mentioned
“I’ve mentioned constantly all alongside, typically to criticism from individuals in my very own facet of the argument, I might not countenance an unlawful referendum – not least as a result of it could not ship independence and I need Scotland within the fullness of time and due course to develop into an impartial nation.”
Mr Ross mentioned that, ought to a request be made for one more referendum, Prime Minister Boris Johnson would reject it.
“Nicola Sturgeon has been clear. If she will get a majority, she’ll take her eye off the ball for Scotland’s restoration, for rebuilding this nation from this pandemic and search to carry one other independence referendum.”
Scottish Labour chief Anas Sarwar, in the meantime, doubted the Tory chief’s dedication to the UK, saying: “The issue you will have with Douglas’ strategy is he’s only a reward to the SNP and if he leads the opposition after this election he’ll be the reward that retains on giving.
“He is solely interested by saving his pores and skin, not saving the Union.”
Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie mentioned the opportunity of an impartial Scotland would permit the nation to form a extra radical future.
“I do not suppose we will afford to go up the chance to form our personal restoration,” he mentioned.
“This can be a second of unbelievable alternative to determine what sort of nation goes to emerge from Covid.”
Lib Dem chief Willie Rennie, nonetheless, was exasperated by the dialogue of the structure, saying: “The people who find themselves ready an age for psychological well being remedy I believe deserve higher than this, the people who find themselves determined for a job deserve higher than this.”
The First Minister additionally mentioned she doesn’t assist a rise in taxes, however admitted “unexpected circumstances” corresponding to cuts to the block grant could necessitate such a transfer.
Mr Ross’ celebration has additionally mentioned it desires to deliver taxes in Scotland again into line with the remainder of the UK, however claims this is able to solely occur in the direction of the top of the parliamentary time period, if the financial outlook permits.
“I’m not saying it is a cast-iron dedication,” the Conservative mentioned.
“However our pledge is to hunt parity within the tax system, for 1.1 million individuals in Scotland who’re taxed extra for doing the very same job than they’re in the remainder of the UK.”
Mr Sarwar, who has additionally mentioned he is in opposition to a tax rise however would wish to see such a transfer for these incomes no less than £150,00zero per 12 months within the first occasion, accused the Tory chief of wanting to present himself a tax reduce – to Mr Ross’ protestations.
“What Douglas is attempting to say… is he would give himself a tax reduce relatively than individuals throughout the nation.”
Mr Ross is already an MP, and is searching for to develop into an MSP, in addition to being the chief of the Scottish Tories.
“You wish to give your self a tax reduce for maybe all three salaries you wish to earn,” Mr Sarwar advised him.