The above is a story put out by the Press Association today. Some might think it is hypothetical, given that the unionist parties have vowed to vote down the referendum bill in The Scottish Parliament - despite polls which show the majority of Scots in favour of a referendum. Even the inclusion of a question on full economic powers within the UK has not persuaded them. Why are they so afraid of the Scottish people? And why are the Liberals imposing an AV referendum on us but denying us one on our country's future?
But postponing the bill until after the election would be a high risk strategy. My own preference would be to find a way to consult the people despite unionist opposition. Then we can put independence at the heart of the debate between now and the election.
Independence is the only alternative to meekly following the Tory agenda, which as well as cutting, gives us no power to grow our own economy. Full economic powers will allow us to do that, but they are in the gift of London while independence is for us to claim ourselves. At the moment the government in London is offering Scotland nothing except the flawed and damaging Calman proposals - a shameful indictment of the Liberals who appear to have sold out their own longstanding commitment to far more extensive devolution, as outlined in The Steel Commission.
We know one thing about the outcome of a three question referendum - very few will vote for the status quo. The majority will favour independence or full economic powers. That will put the government at Westminster under serious pressure and will change the relationship with Holyrood. But can we afford to wait until after the 2011 election? All views are welcome - for more on the subject you might enjoy this piece by Kevin Williamson