Do we need new constitution?

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GIVEN that a poll shows support for the Yes campaign has slumped (News, 1 September) while our First Minister Alex Salmond is touting a written constitution for Scotland, I find myself asking the question, “Why?” and is there a connection?

It is worth remembering that when the constitutional authority – the people of Scotland – elected their representatives to sit in their Parliament, they did so in full anticipation that MSPs would legislate on their behalf, not on MSPs’ behalf nor on behalf of their political parties.

In the run-up to the recall of Scotland’s Parliament, political leaders were quick to remind us that Scotland’s “Right of Sovereignty” was enshrined in our written constitution – Scotland’s “Claim of Right” (1689) and Scots civil and constitutional legal systems were exempt from the Treaty of Union, 1707, remaining intact to the present day.

Therefore Mr Salmond should know that Scotland already has a written constitution requiring but a few amendments to bring it up to date in the 21st century. Does he have another agenda or is he playing party politics with the debate on the independence referendum?

I think he should let us know before the Yes campaign suffers a further slump in the opinion polls.

John JG McGill, Kilmarnock

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