Published: Sat, March 18, 2017
Global | By Doris Richards

Independence or Tory Brexit: Scottish Parliament to debate country's future


The Scottish Parliament has no power to call referendums on issues of the constitution under devolution law - making it unlikely the SNP could make any argument their referendum was legal. She was still keen to "work our way through" her disagreements with May, she said, arguing that they both agreed the referendum should not be held now.

Meanwhile, former Scottish first minister, Alex Salmond, warned that the Scottish Nationalists could abandon their previous proposals for maintaining a currency union with the United Kingdom, in an interview with United Kingdom broadsheet the Financial Times on Friday.

"It's putting her at odds with the democratically expressed will of the Scottish Parliament - and that should not be a comfortable place for her to be".

Ms Dugdale said: "Gordon and I have been working closely together as Labour puts forward an alternative to the constitutional extremes offered by the SNP and the Tories. In other words, the margin will be more than 45-55, which is why I am not entirely sure that this referendum will go ahead at any point". May described Brexit as a moment of opportunity to shape a brighter future for Britain and "ask ourselves what kind of country we want to be".

This week, we discovered that Nicola Sturgeon's answer to new divisions, grievances and borders is. more divisions, grievances and borders.

The appeal of Europe is precisely why many believe a second referendum could succeed: 62 percent of Scots voted against Brexit.

"Right now we should be working together, not pulling apart", May said in a televised interview.

As things stand, and we have yet to hear Ms Sturgeon's conference speech - that comes tomorrow - the battle is for public opinion.

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The public expenditure backdrop in Scotland now includes a fiscal transfer from the United Kingdom of £1,700 per person, which amounts to £9bn per year - allowing us to spend more on essential public services.

Her goal is "building a stronger, fairer Britain that our children and grandchildren will be proud to call home".

Mr Swinney said it would then be up to Mrs May to "recognise the democratic wishes of the people of Scotland".

As I say, that's my job as prime minister and so for that reason I say to the SNP: "now is not the time".

Mrs May said on Friday: "It is now clear that using Brexit as the pretext to engineer a second independence referendum has been the SNP's sole objective ever since last June".

Sturgeon said it is the Scottish Government's "intention" to hold "a referendum on the same basis we had as the one in 2014". Now she has changed her mind and appears to be trying to engage in some kind of horse-trading with the UK Government.

GORDON BROWN will call for Holyrood to be handed a raft of new powers after Brexit as part of a "third option" for Scotland's future. It's the First Minister's admission last September that, for her, independence "ultimately transcends the issues of Brexit, of oil, of national wealth and balance sheets and of passing political fads and trends".

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