Keith Brown: Scots flock to independence cause as Brexit becomes real

Brexit is the latest manifestation of a longstanding democratic deficit which too often sees Scotland's needs ignored, writes Keith Brown MSP

One of the valuable lessons to learn from the past few years in politics is that there is little we can be absolutely certain of. The lay of the land in UK politics is very different now to what it was in 2014 and the promises made to Scotland at that time – guaranteed EU membership, and substantial new powers for Holyrood – are being systematically undone by a Tory Government at Westminster.

Scotland’s interests have been cast aside by the Tories as the chaos of Brexit unfolds. Far from Scotland being treated as an equal partner, it is increasingly clear that the process underway is undermining Scotland’s interests – our jobs and our economy – in order to appease the hard right-wingers on the Tory backbenches.

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But as we hurtle towards that Brexit cliff-edge, and even the prospect of crashing out of Europe without a deal, people are increasingly drawn towards a positive alternative.

Keith Brown says Brexit is the latest manifestation of a longstanding democratic deficit in which Scotland's needs are ignored. Picture: John Devlin

Scotland can choose to determine its own future, rather than being buffeted about by the misguided decisions of a Westminster system which seems engulfed in permanent crisis.

Scotland can choose to look outwards, building strong partnerships, growing international trade and attracting talent; instead of closing doors.

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Poll: Brexit will build majority support for Scottish independence

We can choose to take control of all the levers we need to grow our economy and create a fairer society, instead of taking a step backwards with the damage Brexit will do to business and jobs.

These are the opportunities we can grasp by always getting the governments we vote for in an independent Scotland, as opposed to Westminster governments which treat our interests as an afterthought at best, if not simply an inconvenience.

What’s more, while confidence in Westminster plummets, people continue to trust the SNP to deliver for Scotland at Holyrood, reinforcing the case for more powers to be exercised closer to home.

Brexit is merely the latest manifestation of the longstanding democratic deficit, which all too often sees Scotland’s needs – and voice – ignored.

As such, it is no surprise at all to see the latest polling evidence showing majority support for independence once Brexit becomes a reality.

As Westminster continues to ignore Scotland as an equal partner and people understandably continue to question how bleak the future might be within a Tory-run Brexit Britain, support for Scotland taking its future into its own hands will only continue to grow.

Keith Brown MSP is the depute leader of the SNP