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'Absolute constant' Queen has been 'very reassuring'

Former prime minister Sir John Major has paid tribute to the Queen as an "absolute constant" in British public life.

Sir John Major is one of the 12 prime ministers of Elizabeth II's reign so far. Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Archive

Her Majesty will today surpass her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria as Britain's longest reigning monarch after inheriting the throne in 1952.

Throughout the last 60 or so years, the Queen has been an absolute constant.

Whilst prime ministers have come and gone, celebrities have come and gone, life has changed, she and the monarchy have been an absolute constant in their lives and I think that is very reassuring.

– Sir John Major, speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today Programme

Sturgeon: Major comments 'an affront to democracy'

Sir John Major's warning about the threat the SNP could pose to the UK is an "affront to democracy", Scotland's First Minister said.

Sturgeon: Major comments 'an affront to democracy' Credit: Jonathan Brady/Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Nicola Sturgeon hit out at the former Conservative prime minister's remarks, after he intervened in the midst of a General Election campaign which has put the SNP in the political spotlight.

Ms Sturgeon hit back, insisting: "Some of the comments we're hearing in the media this morning from Tory politicians like John Major are actually an affront to democracy."

John Major's comments are silly, over the top and frankly they don't show him in a particularly good light.

My message to John Major is Scotland's voice deserves to be heard in whatever way the Scottish people choose, and voting SNP means Scotland's voice will be heard more loudly and strongly at Westminster than it has ever been heard before.

But it will also be a voice for better and more progressive politics at Westminster, so perhaps it's not surprising that John Major doesn't like that. But what he is saying disrespects democracy, it's up to people in Scotland to vote how they choose to vote and make their voice heard.

– Nicola Sturgeon

PM: Major's EU speech 'powerful, important and timely'

David Cameron said he agrees with Sir John Major after the former prime minister suggested the EU was often seen as showing a "lofty disdain" for British concerns.

During a speech in Germany, Sir John put the chance of a British exit from the European Union at "just under 50%" and warned it would become a reality unless there is genuine reform.

Sir John put the chance of a British exit from the EU at 'just under 50%'. Credit: Tim Ireland/PA

When asked about Sir John's speech, Cameron said, "I agree with what he said."

"When countries in Europe have difficulties that need to be addressed, Europe needs to have the flexibility to address them," he said, before describing Sir John's speech as powerful, important and timely.

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