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« Wikipedia enters anti-Scottish BBC radio row | Main | Salmond on the referendum question »

September 05, 2010


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The referendum bill should go ahead for the reason(s) other commenters have put. If the unionists vote it down they are voting down giving the people of Scotland a chance to decide their future in a way they have never been able to before. The referenda we have had to date have been on a basis of: 'here is what we're prepared to give you - do you want it?' We have never been asked: 'what do you want?' Abandoning a referendum is defeatism and will be portrayed as such by the unionist media i.e. the media. This really should be a 'no-brainer'.

Hmmm - seems the SNP disagree with the AP:

The SNP has confirmed that it is considering a plan to put more powers for the Scottish Parliament and Scottish independence at the heart of the 2011 Holyrood campaign. A spokesman for SNP Leader Alex Salmond said that this strategy would be further discussed at an upcoming meeting of the Scottish Cabinet: "We are discussing our strategy to make the referendum the transcending issue of the election, to demonstrate that financial independence is the only alternative to a decade or more of Westminster dictated cuts. "SNP MSPs met last week as part of that discussion and we will continue it at the next meeting of the Scottish Cabinet. "At the upcoming election, it is essential we make the link between constitutional progress for Scotland, and the economic and financial powers we need for the Scottish Parliament to grow the economy and increase revenues to invest in vital public services. "It is clear that we will now have to appeal over their heads of the unionist MSPs to the people of Scotland next May. "The London parties have already said that they would vote down the right of the people to decide, despite the ludicrous position of the Tories and Lib Dems in wanting a referendum on an AV voting system that no-one supports on Scottish polling day – and the Labour Party, Tories and Lib Dems – all pursuing a referendum next spring on more powers for Wales, while denying a referendum for Scotland. The hypocrisy of all the London parties will be well and truly exposed, as will their lack of any coherent policy to generate new wealth to offset public spending cuts. "In these circumstances, we wish to make it the right of the people to have their say on independence, and the absolute requirement for economic and financial powers for Scotland’s Parliament, the transcending issue of the election campaign. "Tactically, we are deciding whether to introduce a Bill to allow the unionist parties to vote it down or rather to publish the Bill and concentrate on canvassing public support. A new re-elected SNP government will be in a powerful position to secure passage of the referendum, having successfully mobilised the people over the blocking tactics of the unionist parties."

In the words of Wendy 'Bring it on' pronto. Scotland has nothing to lose if its defeated this term as has been already stated its yet another attack line on the unionist parties for next year.

I think that a bill for a referendum should be put forward in this Parliament because even if it's voted down in this one doesn't mean it can't be brought forward again in the next one. The strategy of only putting a referendum bill forward in the next Parliament is dependent on the SNP getting back into Government which is not certain at all. Backing off now would be a bad strategy.

A defeat on an independence bill would not be a defeat by the Scottish people in a referendum but a defeat by the Unionist parties in Holyrood which is not the same thing at all.

Unless the SNP make this a campaign where the slogan is, "Tory cuts or independence", the whole thing is going to be a damp squib. The campaigns for Labour, the Tories and the Lib-Dems are all going to be based on who will handle the delivery of the cuts best in Scotland. If the SNP don't run on independence then that's going to be the sum total of their campaign as well. The best analogy for this sort of campaign is the electorate being offered a choice of surgeons for an amputation instead of the penicillin of independence.

I agree with Dougie Kinnear that a defeat in Holyrood could be used as a plus in the campaign for independence. The fact that Labour voted the bill down and prefer Tory cuts to independence would be a powerful campaign message. Labour are Cameron's allies in Scotland and have a policy of, "Better Tory than independent", and that point should be hammered home in the coming campaign.

To entirely drop plans for a Referendum predicated on the fact that the other parties will simply vote it down, is a flawed and negative move, and one which does not resonate with the SNP's perceived happy clappy positivity.

Since any Holyrood referendum is not constitutionally binding, there MUST be moves made to allow all UK citizens to have a say in what would be the dissolution of the 1707 Act of Union. As has been shown time and time again by English commentators, England are tired of 'carrying us', 'subsidising us', 'tired of us having free health care, prescriptions etcetera'.

As Baroness Dreich said last week:

"If Scotland wants to be independent, OK be my guest go ahead, do what you want and please take back with you all the Scottish politicians there’s so many of them, you know starting with Blair and Brown and Campbell take them all back and off you go and go off on your own, because actually we’re all subsidising them, I think err by way of benefits and all sorts of reasons and if they want to show how independent they are then OK thank you and goodbye."

There couldn't be a clearer indication that England are tired of Scotland and I think many in their media would welcome a binding UK wide opportunity to voice that concern.

There has only ever been one UK wide referendum, the United Kingdom referendum of 1975, which was used to gauge support for our continued membership of the EEC. That was thirty-five years ago on June the 5th, a mere eight months after the SNP garnered 839,617 votes and 11 MP's at the October 1974 General Election.

Put the motion before the Scottish Parliament and make it one of confidence. If the unionists vote it down what will happen? A Labour/Libdem coalition? Whatever - let the unionists take the heat for the cuts and the thwarting of Scottish aspirations. The SNP have nothing to gain by holding on to power at the present time. They've done a decent job so far but now it's time to throw down the gauntlet.

The referendum on the AV proposal means that the Uninist parties lose two of their main objections to a referendum on Independence, namely, cost and wrong time because of the economy.

Continue with the referendum and, if as seems likely, the unionists vote it down then it can still be a central issue of the 2011 Election. Drop it and it is likely to 'die' as an issue in the election becaue the Unionists will have been given a rod with which to beat the SNP.

I think the SNP are postponing the referendum because they are in quite a poor poll position for the upcoming Holyrood elections and would rather concentrate on devolved matters which they can be judged on. Labour seem to be leading the charge at the moment and with huge cuts in public services to come then I think the SNP are wanting to concentrate on this.

However I would like the SNP to go for the referendum and argue the case that it was UK PLC that got Scotland into this mess under the stewardship of Gordon Brown. Sometimes I think the SNP do run scared of their ultimate objective because some how the timing is not right.

I also think because the Tories did not do as well as most people thought they would and had to go into coalition with the Libs, this has had an adverse effect on the SNP. If the Tories managed to win an outright majority then their attitude towards Scotland would have been a little harsher than it currently is and this in turn could had turned more voters towards the SNP.

If the SNP do won a second term then they had better put the referendum up for grabs or I think they can kiss it goodbye for good!!

The SNP have gained a lot of support over the planned referendum, doing a u-turn will not only be a severe blow to that support but a boost to the Unionist parties.

I think it is important that the introduction of the bill goes ahead as planned even though there is little chance of success because it is imperative that the Unionists are proven to be incapable of allowing Scots the democratic right determine their future.

In my opinion the refusal of the Unionists to allow the bill would be the perfect beginning to the SNP campign for the 2011 elections. Anything less, I fear, will result in the likelyhood of a return to power for Labour and their Unionst partners

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