THREE Scottish Tory MPs have claimed that Boris Johnson will swat away the SNP and any second independence referendum like a midge.

Brexiteers Colin Clark, Ross Thomson and Douglas Ross in a joint column in a London-based newspaper today hailed the ex Foreign Secretary as a "passionate and committed unionist'.

They wrote: "In Scotland, the SNP's never-ending calls for indyref2 have become the never-ending background noise of a midge loose in the room.

"Boris is the candidate who has been clear that more referendums - on either the EU or independence are not on the cards. In doing so he will help swat the SNP."

The column, published in the Daily Telegraph, came a day after a Panelbase poll suggested a Johnson premiership would be enough to increase support for independence to 53%.

A separate You Gov survey published last week found 63% of UK Tory members would rather see Brexit delivered than keep Scotland in the UK.

The First Minister said yesterday that Johnson was seen as one of the principal people responsible for the Brexit “mess” by those living north of the border, where 62% voted Remain in the 2016 EU referendum.

She said that the case for independence is “stronger than it has ever been” and said she is confident the SNP would win a referendum on the issue.

Commentators on Twitter noted the three Tory MPs may have underestimated how hard it is to swat midges.

The SNP MP Carol Monaghan said: "Clearly he’s never come across Scottish midges."

Journalist Ruth Wishart noted: "The midges have seen off bigger, much more impressive beasts than this blustering bumbler."