THE tax rises imposed on Scotland’s highest earners in the Scottish Budget enjoy widespread majority support, new polling has found.

Earlier in December, acting Finance Secretary John Swinney announced a raft of tax raising measures aimed at the highest-earning Scots, roughly 12% of the population.

The point at which the top rate of income tax would kick in was lowered from £150,000 to £125,140, with this top band also seeing an increase from 46% to 47%. Around one in 100 working age Scots fall into this top band.

Earnings above £43,663 also saw a tax rise of one penny in the pound, from 41% to 42%. Around 11% of working age Scots fall into this tax band.

READ MORE: What Tories don’t say when they complain Scots ‘pay more tax than the English’

Swinney told MSPs that the tax rises were necessary “to enable spending on patient care in our NHS”.

The Scottish Tories criticised the move, claiming it would "stifle" growth and that money for the NHS could have been found "elsewhere".

But in a blow to Douglas Ross's party, new polling by Savanta ComRes for the Scotsman has found that Swinney’s plans enjoy clear majority support across the country.

The survey of 1048 Scots adults – conducted in the days immediately after the Budget was announced – found that 58% of people backed the tax rises on the highest earners, with just 19% opposed.

Furthermore, 56% of people supported cutting the top rate threshold from £150,000, with just 20% against the move.

Asked about tax rises on the rate of tax above £43,663, a total of 58% of people backed the move while a quarter (24%) opposed it.

In total, a massive 73% of people said they supported using tax rises to fund the NHS, with just 7% opposing the policy.

A clear majority of people (61%) also supported the £20 million indyref2 fund being repurposed to support vulnerable people through the heating and energy crisis. Just 12% opposed this move.

The Savanta ComRes polling also found support for striking workers, with some 64% of people backing industrial action against 30% who oppose it.

Asked about potential nursing strikes specifically, 66% of Scots said they would back the NHS workers, while 23% said they would oppose them.

This was broadly similar to a Savanta poll for The Independent, which across the UK found that 63% of people back the nurses' strike while 24% oppose it.

The Savanta ComRes polling was conducted from December 16-21.