Second indyref

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David Cameron’s threat that he would not sanction a second independence referendum demonstrates mind-blowing arrogance.

This is not a decision for Mr Cameron or any politician to make, but a decision to be made by the Scottish people. Should the SNP include it in its manifesto for the 2016 Scottish Parliament elections and win that election then so be it.

This arrogance from the current Prime Minister, whose party boasts one MP in Scotland, belies, however, a wider malaise and 
explains why people are so apathetic about politics.

How dare he, or anyone else in the Westminster bubble for that matter, tell the Scottish people what they can and cannot do.

Politics in Scotland has changed; it changed for good after the independence referendum, it is just that Mr Cameron and those in the Westminster square mile have not quite caught up yet.

Alex Orr

Leamington Terrace

Edinburgh

After two television debates this week is Nicola Sturgeon getting in a muddle over a second referendum on independence? The question of whether it becomes a manifesto promise for the 2016 Holyrood elections is an important one. The matter is sure to come under close scrutiny before the Westminster poll on 7 May.

Ms Sturgeon needs to make a decision that will keep her own members happy and at the same time not disillusion many of her new-found supporters.

She has clearly been put on the back foot by some close questioning in the studios. What is the best line she can take to tackle this? The point needs to be made forcefully that the election of a large batch of SNP MPs next month has a primary purpose.

It is to make sure that deficit 
reduction is managed in a way that will help the interests of people living in Scotland – tackling the worst aspects of welfare reform is one case in point; another is ensuring that Scotland’s share of public expenditure is maintained.

They are not there primarily to make the case for another referendum. That task rests with the SNP convener and her advisers.

It would not damage her credibility if she were to make clear now that she would hope to have another referendum in the next decade, but not before the 2021 Scottish Parliament elections.

That will give her party in the Edinburgh legislature the time to reinforce its reputation for competence. It will give her time to gauge the economic and political situation without risking either a major confrontation with the Westminster government or the possibility of a second humiliating rejection of the party’s raison d’etre.

In politics it is sometimes necessary to calm passion with judgment. Ms Sturgeon should exercise that judgment soon.

Bob Taylor

Shiel Court

Glenrothes