To mark Billy Connolly's 80th birthday, we're looking back at the legendary comedian's top political quotes.

The National:

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Connolly is well known for his left-wing views, and years ago was vocally opposed to the idea of Scottish independence. However in recent years he has softened somewhat and offered insight into how he now views Scotland's path ahead.

If you listen to Johnson, you need professional help

Speaking to Sky News in 2020, the straight-talking performer gave his honest opinion on the former prime minister.

“Anybody who listens to Boris needs professional help,” he told the journalist. “He’s a big silly toff. Britain’s been listening to big silly toffs for years. It’s time they listened to themselves and got on with it.”

In the same interview, Connolly told viewers about his opinion on politicians in general.

“More people should listen to comedians and fewer people should listen to politicians. They should listen to comedians and poets. They’re telling the truth.”

His experience with “pathetic” Labour politicians

Speaking as part of the BBC Scotland docu-series Billy and Us, Connolly opened up on some of his more personal political experiences. He explained he had felt “conned” into being part of a 1974 Labour Party election broadcast.

“I was kind of conned into it,” he explained. “I was asked to come up to a meeting I might find interesting. I went, I didn’t find it interesting, but somebody asked me a question, I answered and I suddenly discovered I was on the [party political broadcast]. So you won’t find me very near political people now.”

He went on to talk about how a Scottish Labour politician from Anderston, his birthplace, talked to him.

“She started to try to ‘out slum’ me, saying my slum was worse than your slum. That thing Labour politicians do. I find it pathetic.”

On Scotland being forced out of the EU by Brexit, despite 62% of Scots backing Remain

In his 2018 book Made in Scotland, previously indy-opposed Connolly gave a different view on the future of his home country.

“The Brexit vote is a disaster and the breaking up of the togetherness of Europe is a crime bordering on a sin,” he wrote.

“I think the more people are together, not separate, the happier they will be.

“The most important thing for Scotland is to keep our contact with Europe.

“Scots voted to stay in Europe, and if the only way for us to do that is to become independent from England, that may just be the way to go. And I never thought I would say that.”

On “nationalism” and the idea of a Scottish republic

Speaking in the Billy and Us series, Connolly spoke of his commitment to “never allowing yourself to be put in a box marked working class or Scottish, or anything else that limits who you are or what you can say”.

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He said: “I’ve never liked nationalism in any of its guises. I’m not saying I’ve never agreed with independence. I think a Scottish republic is as good an idea as any I’ve ever heard.

“But I don’t represent anybody or anything. I don’t think it’s wise to.”

Independence is the way Scotland is headed

Speaking to the media before the release of Billy Connolly: It’s Been A Pleasure, Connolly said he thinks Scotland is now heading towards leaving the Union.

"I think they're getting close to it. They're fed up with the voting one way and getting whatever England votes for,” he said.

The National:

"And when they tried to vote for independence, the English Government said it's bad because you'll lose the common market, you won't have the European market because you've gone independent.

"And so they voted against independence and then this Government voted to leave the common market, so they felt cheated.

"I don't know if they'll ever do it, but I think that's the way they're heading."