Scottish independence: SNP plan bill to hold indyref2 without Westminster approval, but know it won’t happen
The proposal is to amend the Scotland Act 1998, which details what Holyrood can and cannot legislate on, to "unlock Westminster's denial of democracy".
Or at least, that’s the line, because this is a Bill that will not get support, will not pass, but will work as a stunt to say more efforts are being made for independence.
After the court ruling, the two sides remain at an impasse, with the SNP wanting something they can only get with UK Government approval.
The First Minister aims to fight the next general election as a “de-facto” referendum, but this is easier said than done. Unfortunately for the SNP, while some arguments may have merit, there are no real routes to achieve independence other than creating so much support Westminster has to cave in.
Wednesday’s debate is part of that. It allows the new Westminster group leader Stephen Flynn a chance to put across his arguments for a second vote and secures headlines on efforts being made for it.
It will see “democracy denier” leaflets mocked up, and the SNP hope it will offer a bump in support in the same way the Supreme Court verdict did.
The move also represents a change of approach from that offered in Holyrood, with Mr Flynn understood to be critical of Nicola Sturgeon’s “de-facto” referendum line.
Speaking before the debate, the Aberdeen South MP claimed amending the Act would stop Westminster imposing “a roadblock on Scotland's democratic journey to independence”, and insisted the “people of Scotland have already voted for a referendum and now is the time for one”.
Speaking to SNP MPs, there is no belief this will change anything, convince anyone, or is in any way a serious method to achieve independence.
It is instead an obvious political stunt, but there’s nothing wrong with that. With no sign of the UK Government changing its mind, the SNP is wise to come up with new ways to apply pressure.
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