“Sturgeon is even finding some sympathy on the soft right. Matthew Parris of The Times believes the Scots should have a second vote if they want one. The Guardian’s Simon Jenkins agrees, arguing that “Anglo-Scottish relations should be released from the lingering fog of Anglo imperialism”.
“Holyrood has now voted to trigger Section 30, a call for a new independence referendum. I very much hope that this will be the first step on a path that will allow Scotland to retain its membership of the European Union, to respect and protect the rights and freedoms that we value.” The author’s continued journey towards Yes…
“The Scottish Tories have happened upon a strategy to avoid association with the Conservatives in London. For the moment, keeping the issue of Scottish independence simmering away works for the Tories. But an issue that has been simmering can easily come to the boil. There is a danger, as David Cameron discovered to his personal cost, in stoking the fires to keep an issue simmering.”
“Scots are only slightly more egalitarian than people in England, while support for redistribution has declined across the UK. People will pay for specific services, notably health, but are not keen on redistribution. They want more powers for Scotland but are less keen on different policies or taxes.”
“That would mean far more savage austerity than Scotland has experienced so far under the protection of the Barnett formula. It probably would also mean tax increases, which the First Minister has so far mostly avoided for fear of driving high earners out of Scotland.”
“If we do leave, it is vital that we do so with realistic expectations of what we can achieve and the difficulties we will face. The unqualified use of the term “independence” raises expectations beyond that by ignoring the many practical constraints on the legal freedom of the Scottish people.”
“The referendum created a realignment in Scottish politics allowing the SNP to fulfil its long-standing ambition of replacing Labour. But it may also signal a change in the nature of political activity. That may be put to the test in the next couple of years.” A look forward to the SNP conference – and beyond
“Holyrood is an incredibly powerful Parliament with the ability to make a real positive difference to the lives of people in Scotland. Sadly, it is not in the interests of those who value independence above all else to use these powers to their full effect. The powers they need must always be those they don’t have. It is the only way their constitutional obsession can be achieved.”
“Why might she want to delay a decision? One reason is that she cannot guarantee to win a second referendum. Opinion polls still show a majority for remaining within the UK. Calling another vote now carries a high risk.” Nicola Sturgeon’s narrowing options examined.