British Expatriates World Events Review

Brexit equals second Scottish referendum?

Written by Dave Peterson

UK leaving the EU possibilities of a second Scottish referendum

Brexit equals second Scottish referendum? Going by the polls, it may be said that a vote to leave by the UK would trigger renewed interest in another referendum on Scottish Independence. It is clear that when the Scotts voted to remain with the UK, it was on the understanding that the UK will remain in the EU. Apparently the sentiments around the brexit issue are quite clear from both England and Scotland. The general opinion is that the English are happy to leave the EU will the Scottish are happy to stay in the EU. This difference in opinion when it comes to the EU may lead to a demand for a second referendum if the vote to leave won the EU referendum. However, it is not as straight forward as just opting to leave.

The Scottish Secretary David Mundell, and the Prime Minister David Cameron, have been consistent with their view that there will be no second referendum. There are also many high profile people who claim that brexit will not be enough grounds for the Scotts to ask for another referendum. However, according to Professor Aileen McHarg a professor at the University of Strathclyde, it is not immediately easy to say if the UK leaving the EU can lead to another referendum in Scotland. It is an issue with legal and political implications.

Brexit equals second Scottish referendum?

According to some experts in constitutional law, the question of whether or not Scotland had the right to call for a referendum without the approval of Westminster was a major topic of disagreement during the first referendum. During the first referendum, the general opinion was that Scotland did not have the legal backing to take unilateral decisions. Nevertheless, before the first Scottish referendum, England and Scotland signed the Edinburgh Agreement in which the Scottish government was allowed to temporarily use the powers of section 30 of the Scottish Act to call for a referendum. However, this power elapsed in 2014. Presently, the general view is that as long as Scotland is part of the UK and decisions concerning the UK are taken from Westminster, any decision on a second Scottish referendum will have to be vetoed by Westminster.

Brexit equals second Scottish referendum?

For Scotland, the main problem will be to decide the best course of action over the next few months. Obviously a brexit vote will have serious repercussions for the Scotts but then as the days to the referendum approach, Scotland will be faced with the following choices

  • They could pretend to be happy and leave all the decisions for Westminster to take. This means they will sit quietly and possibly watch a brexit vote come through with all UK member countries facing the same consequences
  • They could seek a second referendum for independence to happen at the same time as the vote to leave the EU.
  • An independent Scotland will have to negotiate its relationship with other UK states
  • An independent Scotland will have to negotiate with the EU to become an independent member state away from the UK.

All these are speculations and what will actual happen can be anyone’s guess. Meanwhile, there is a huge likelihood that a brexit vote could cause renewed interest in Scotland becoming independent, so quite possibly the Brexit equals second Scottish referendum?

About the author

Dave Peterson

Dave Peterson
Passion for adventure and sharing his life long journey with as many others as possible.

"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." HENRY S. HASKINS

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