The people of Scotland have made two recent choices in referendum votes. One, entirely theirs, saw them vote to narrowly stay part of the United Kingdom. But now the UK has dragged Scotland out of the EU, the Scots want another crack at independence so they can remain.
“To ensure that all options are open to us, this programme for government makes clear that we will consult on the draft referendum bill so it is ready for immediate introduction if we conclude that independence is the best or only way to protect Scotland’s interests,” said Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Tuesday.
Sturgeon has been busy working out her Brexit response over the Summer break and that
policy announcement at the start of a new parliamentary session spells potential trouble for Prime Minister Theresa May in London, who is likely to reject any such initiative.
Former Scottish nationalist leader Alex Salmond, who saw Scotland vote 55-45% to stay in the UK last year, said after the loss that it would be a “once in a generation” vote.
But one of the entirely predictable, and predicted results of the Brexit vote was renewed urgency for Scots to consider a life divorced from the Brussels counterweight to London, and decide they wanted no part of it.
Victory in a second independence referendum would be the only way of possibly retaining membership as an independent member state. And this is exactly what has happened. Increasingly it looks more like a question of when, rather than if a new vote will take place in Scotland.