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Response to JHan (Reply #22)

Sat Apr 15, 2017, 10:15 AM

44. The problem is that there's no other way under the UK constitution to approach this,

unless you expect the majority of people in Scotland just to shut up and accept Brexit. It's not a "trick", it's responsible governance, so give it and Sturgeon some due credit. She's one of the few adults in the room at the moment.

The goalposts have moved over the years. Thatcher is on record as saying that if the SNP (at the time the only pro-independence party, but now the Greens are on board) got a majority of the Scottish MPs at Westminster, that would be enough to trigger independence. That bar was well and truly passed at the last UK parliamentary elections - 56 out of 59 MPs are SNP.

Meanwhile, Scotland voted 62-38% Remain in the Brexit vote. The SNP's manifesto at the last Holyrood elections reserved the right to call another referendum if there was a material change in circumstances such as the UK leaving the EU. One of the "No" (to independence) campaign's main planks was that Scotland would have to leave the EU if it voted for independence, and that, among other scaremongering, swayed a lot of voters. The SNP again became the largest party in the Scottish Parliament at those elections, and supported by the Greens, forms the Scottish administration. That's quite a mandate. How could Sturgeon not follow this through and retain any credibility for her or her party?

I contrast the two years of the Scottish independence referendum campaign with the Brexit campaign. There was very lively debate and engagement at all levels of society in Scotland during the indyref. The "Yes" campaign was expected to have hard and fast answers to each and every question - currency, trade, you name it, and the SNP issued a detailed White Paper, which was picked apart at great length by those opposed. Even now, we know vastly more about what Scottish independence might have looked like than what Brexit might end up looking like.

The answer so far from May to calls for another indyref has been "Now is not the time." Nobody wanted the referendum now. The plan would be to hold the referendum when the Brexit negotiations are complete. This makes a lot of sense, because at that point all the other EU countries will be considering and preparing to vote on the final details.

The only country that has no prospect of a vote about the UK's future outside the EU at that point is the UK itself!

If Scotland doesn't get a referendum or if it votes to stay in the UK, the next step for May or her successor will be to hack away at the hard-won gains in Scottish devolved powers through statutory instruments, most likely with no opportunity for parliamentary scrutiny, neutering or even abolishing the Scottish Parliament. And that government will have carte blanche to turn the UK into an offshore tax haven and multinationals' playground, unless the EU manage to fend that off in negotiations. I don't want to live in that UK.

The whole situation is not of our choosing. I'd be in favour of setting a more decisive bar in a future indyref. I think about two-thirds of the electorate would be achievable, given that at the start of the last indyref, with a lot more scope for Project Fear from the "No" side, support for independence was around the mid-20% and ended up at about 45%, and currently stands at anywhere between 45% and 50-odd, depending which polls you believe.

I guess an alternative might be for Sturgeon to call another Scottish election to seek a mandate for independence, never mind a referendum, but she also has a country to run in the mean time.

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 46 replies Author Time Post
DonViejo Apr 2017 OP
JHan Apr 2017 #1
Bernardo de La Paz Apr 2017 #5
progree Apr 2017 #14
Bernardo de La Paz Apr 2017 #17
progree Apr 2017 #18
JHan Apr 2017 #24
JHan Apr 2017 #20
Bernardo de La Paz Apr 2017 #25
Ghost Dog Apr 2017 #35
Bernardo de La Paz Apr 2017 #37
Ghost Dog Apr 2017 #40
Bernardo de La Paz Apr 2017 #28
Denzil_DC Apr 2017 #43
JHan Apr 2017 #46
randome Apr 2017 #6
cstanleytech Apr 2017 #11
Wounded Bear Apr 2017 #21
Bernardo de La Paz Apr 2017 #26
JHan Apr 2017 #22
LineLineLineLineNew Reply The problem is that there's no other way under the UK constitution to approach this,
Denzil_DC Apr 2017 #44
JHan Apr 2017 #45
Blue_Tires Apr 2017 #15
maxsolomon Apr 2017 #2
byronius Apr 2017 #13
Denzil_DC Apr 2017 #3
Raster Apr 2017 #4
tikka Apr 2017 #8
Hekate Apr 2017 #16
DetlefK Apr 2017 #7
Raster Apr 2017 #10
bronxiteforever Apr 2017 #9
Post removed Apr 2017 #12
Hekate Apr 2017 #19
kydo Apr 2017 #23
Sen. Walter Sobchak Apr 2017 #27
OnDoutside Apr 2017 #30
regnaD kciN Apr 2017 #33
OnDoutside Apr 2017 #41
OnDoutside Apr 2017 #29
LittleBlue Apr 2017 #31
regnaD kciN Apr 2017 #32
Voltaire2 Apr 2017 #34
Ghost Dog Apr 2017 #36
JHan Apr 2017 #38
Ghost Dog Apr 2017 #39
JustABozoOnThisBus Apr 2017 #42
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