“Talking up indyref2 is irresponsible economic vandalism. Our country is divided enough – don’t divide us again First Minister”, says Kezia Dugdale.
UK Govt is saying only a party majority win in a Holyrood election earns a mandate.
“Theresa May does not believe that there is a mandate for a second referendum on Scottish independence.”
“The majority of folk don’t want another vote, the majority of people in Scotland don’t want independence, and the SNP should take this off the table.”, says Ruth Davidson.
Such were the statements made after the Scottish Government officially laid down the consultation for a new Independence Bill yesterday.
The reactions above were entirely expected from the usual suspects…with rather a note of panic about them despite the seeming bullishness.
From Kezia and the Shadow Scottish Secretary who isn’t a Scot, from Labour a clear indication that they were jumping straight into bed with the Tories again…They really are Better Together it seems.
If there is any economic vandalism and irresponsible division they are pointing in the wrong place…It wasn’t the Scottish Government nor the majority of the people of Scotland that have caused this rupture!
As for Theresa May saying that the Scottish Government didn’t have a mandate? Oh yes Theresa they have… There was a clear promise made during the first Independence Referendum to the Scottish people that only by remaining with the UK would Scotland remain in the EU. That promise along with many others are broken.
Plus the SNP clearly had it written in their manifesto this year that a second Independence referendum could be called if there was a material change in circumstance to what had been promised…not only that, but they specifically put what that material circumstance might be, removing Scotland from the EU against the will of the Scottish people.
The BBC got in on the act last night, when their presenter on Scotland 2016 postulated that the SNP didn’t have a mandate because the SNP didn’t have a majority in the Scottish Parliament…Sorry that wont wash either, all there has to be is a majority vote in Parliament when the Bill is presented, and the Greens have already supported it. So a majority it will be.
As for Ruth Davidsons comments… Sorry Ruthie, but the only opinion poll that counts is the one your party weren’t elected on!
Even so, despite all this posturing there is reason to consider that Indy2 may not happen, at least for a lot longer than folks think.
What the Scottish Government did yesterday was draw back the trigger of the gun and point it right at Westminsters head!
For all Theresa Mays huffing and puffing it is her Westminster House which is in danger of being blown down.
Saying that she didn’t think that the Scottish Government didn’t have a mandate is not the same as saying that they can’t have a referendum. To actually try and forbid one would have the effect of a constitutional crisis , guarantee a referendum, and almost certainly guarantee independence. No way, No how is there a snowballs chance in hell will she go there.
What I think may happen is somewhat closer to the following I think..
Theresa May and her Brexit Government have backed themselves into a hard place with no easy way out.
On one hand she is trying to out Maggie , Maggie Thatcher.
Her whole non mandated position is under threat before she has even begun.
On one hand she has her imbecilic hard Brexiters in her cabinet.
She has an increasingly hostile to foreigners English electorate which she has encouraged and fostered.
On the other hand she has the other half of the English electorate and Tory MPs who are Europhiles and not at all happy they aren’t given a say and who are challenging her and her government.
She also has an EU who are not about to roll over for her and who has the ace hand.
And to top it all, she has a Scottish Government threatening her with another Scottish Independence referendum she will be very worried about losing. The idea that she gets remembered as being the Prime Minister who finished David Camerons job of losing Scotland will not sit well with her at all.
Under these circumstances, what are her options? How can she get out of this pincer movement anywhere near in one piece?
Well she has one thing in her favour….I really don’t get the impression that Nicola Sturgeon really wants that second referendum quite yet either.
I take what Nicola has been saying very seriously, and I very much believe her when she says that she is examining all options that would keep Scotland in the UK and In the Single Market. She is prepared to use Indyref2, but only as a last resort when all else has failed.
A couple of months ago I heard a previously very senior person in the Scottish Government(I am not saying who) had been saying that they didn’t think that there would be another Independence referendum. They were of the opinion that it simply wasn’t on the cards.
Knowing very well who this person is, and knowing that they played a very active part in the Independence referendum of 2014, and knowing them to be very astute and pragmatic, I was stunned. I just couldn’t work out for the life of me why they were saying such a thing…It just didn’t add up!
At the time I just wrote this off, surely this couldn’t be right? Had they taken leave of their senses?
Well maybe not?
What I perceive may be happening behind government scenes at a very high level, is at the moment gamesmanship… It is a high stakes game of poker of the highest order.
All these supposed non talks that the Scottish government is having in Europe will be setting the scene between 2 players at the table, the EU and the Scottish Government…but they are not really having talks you understand, just tea and coffee…Aye right!
Theresa May wasn’t really having any talks with EU politicians on the matter yesterday either…not allowed they say, not until Article 50 is confirmed….Believe that if you like.
Scottish Brexit Minister is meeting today with Westminster Brexit minister again…but of course Theresa May says Scotland will only be consulted…It is Her Government alone that will do the negotiating…. So what is Mike Russell and Davies talking about? The result of the 2.45 at haydock on Saturday? Aye of course.
Does anyone remember “Yes Minister”…something like that without the comedy.
My guess at this moment in time is the Theresa May and her goverment will negotiate a Switzerland type option…neither in the EU, or EFTA, but a sepearate arrangement which allows for some access to the Single Market at a cost, but with it more controls over immigration with special privileges for EU citizens. This will be a halfway house to meeting the demands of both the Europhiles and Eurosceptics within her party and she can say that she has delivered for the most xenophobic little UKIP Englander both exit from the EU and Immigration control
Meanwhile to allow things to run more smoothly with this halfway house, she comes to agreement with the Irish Republic which allows for the border to remain open with Northern Ireland so as to not disturb their peace process.
Scotland will do something like a reverse Greenland and remain either in the EU or in EFTA , I suspect the latter. The Fishing and Agricultural rights will revert from the EU to Scotland in that case, plus any other areas the EU currently presides over.
And to finish it off nicely …. something like what the VOW was originally supposed to mean and the Scots MPs come home, and agreements are set up over joint defence and currency etc … In effect Independence in all but name through the back door…
It will be interesting times for sure….