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No referendum on Scottish independence for at least 10 years, say Tory leadership contenders

10 Jul 2022 3 minute read
Scottish independence supporters march through Glasgow. Photo Lesley Martin PA Images

Two former ministers in the running to become Prime Minister have said there should not be another vote on Scottish independence for at least another decade.

Both Jeremy Hunt and Sajid Javid said on Sunday it should be at least 10 years before another referendum is held, flying in the face of the Scottish Government timetable that would see Scots head to the polls on the issue next October.

Nicola Sturgeon said last month another vote would be held on October 19 2023 and Scotland’s top law officer has referred a Bill to the UK Supreme Court in a bid to ensure any attempt by the Scottish Parliament to legislate for a referendum was within its powers.

When asked on the BBC’s Sunday Morning programme if he would allow another referendum, Jeremy Hunt said: “Not in the next 10 years.”

Mr Javid, responding to the same question in a later interview, said: “The last one was for a generation and the generation hasn’t changed, so no.

“Not forever, but not at least for a decade.”

Anti-democratic

The SNP’s deputy Westminster leader Kirsten Oswald said it was clear the two were “reading from the same anti-democratic playbook”.

Meanwhile, fellow leadership candidate Tom Tugendhat said the UK was more a Scottish union than an English one.

“Scotland has been essential to the union right from the beginning,” he said on BBC Scotland’s The Sunday Show.

“In many ways, this is a Scottish union more than an English one.

“It’s all about the ideas that so many people across these islands have generated together and the way that they’ve spread around the world and develop the new form of liberty that we’ve seen spread over the last 70-80 years.

“These are in many ways Scottish ideas.”

When asked if the union was a voluntary one, Mr Tugendhat said “of course” it was and that there were no rules stopping one country from leaving.

But he added: “What (the Tories) are saying, simply, is you can’t keep asking the same question hoping for a different answer.”

‘Cheap political play’

He went on to describe the recent push as a “cheap political play” by the SNP to distract from the fact they are “failing” on education and healthcare.

Pressed on under what circumstances he would grant the request for powers to be devolved to hold a referendum, the chairman of the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee said he would not be drawn on “hypotheticals in the future”.

On the same show, SNP deputy leader Keith Brown said granting the Section 30 order required for another referendum would be a “good start” in repairing the fractured relationship between the UK and Scottish governments.

“One of the fundamental tests of (if the relationship can improve) will be whether they’re willing to recognise the will of the Scottish people,” he said.

“Whether they are now willing to say ‘of course we’ll have an agreed referendum’, that would be a very good start for whoever takes over.”

But he added: “Given the runners and riders that we know about, they’re all people that defended Boris Johnson, they’re all people who were complicit in the lies and depravity of his administration, so I don’t hold out a great deal of hope.”

Both Mr Tugendhat and Mr Hunt have been vocal critics of the Prime Minister in previous months.


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John
John
1 month ago

Mae John Bwl a’i gyd-imperialwyr heb ddysgu dim.
Cadwch ati gyfeillion – wnewch chi ddim ond ein sbarduno tuag annibyniaeth!

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 month ago

The Three English flagged yachts currently taking part in the Barmouth to Fort William Three Peaks Yacht Race may experience a little friendly banter on arrival at the foot of Ben Nevis I fear. There are also four Welsh boats, one Scottish and a Dutch vessel in the race… It can be followed on YB Tracking Race Viewer-Three Peaks Yacht Race and is a sailing, cycling and mountain running delight. But then I am a fan of Tortoise Racing too… If I were a passenger in a lifeboat with either of those two gentlemen or any of the other competitors… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Mab Meirion
Doctor Trousers
1 month ago

I expect Starmer to counter this some time over the next week by announcing that a Labour government would settle the issue of independence once and for all by invading Scotland and bombing Holyrood.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

So it’s democracy on our terms. And they wonder why Scots & Scotland again reject Unionist parties at the last Hollyrood election when they blatantly ignore the will of the people. And whoever leads the English Conservative party and becomes England’s Prime Minister, and yes you heard me correctly, England’s Prime Minister, will continue in the same vein as a populist Boris Johnson by imposing English direct rule on the people of Scotland & Wales by stealth. All I can say is that if the SNP’s Supreme Court challenge comes to nothing would advise Scots to totally wipe Labour, Tories… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Cymro
Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

Why do politicians elected in England think they have the right to dictate to Scottish voters.. The last thing they can call this is democracy. At least be like you’re paymaster Putin, and give up all pretence of a free and voluntary union, and call it for what it is, a union for the betterment and sole profit of England and the establishment. Can anyone imagine England being told by the Celtic nations they would be denied a vote over Brexit.

BobSnail
BobSnail
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

Probably for the same reason as Scottish MPs voted on English-only matters such as tuition fees for university students.

Arwyn
Arwyn
1 month ago
Reply to  BobSnail

Oh, this pesky dysfunctional UK.

Arwyn
Arwyn
1 month ago

Daft Brit Nats. Remember “The Pledge”? More devolution, stay in the UK stay in the EU? Then the Brexit Brit Nats changed the state of play entirely. Everything went out the window the day Boris Johnson’s “English Nationalist Party” (Ken Clarke, Chris Patten) took power. I remember the triumphalism in the first session of this Parliament. But did they think that their actions have no consequences? Foist your anglo-British Nationalism, your vision of a singular, centralised anglo-British Nation State, your libertarian, I’m allright Jack Tory Brexit State on us … and you will get a response. The Tories have torn… Read more »

Marc Davies
Marc Davies
1 month ago

They have a low opinion of Scotland and the Scottish people, but are somewhat scared of them. Whereas they just have complete contempt for us.

Erisian
Erisian
1 month ago

the last one was for a generation. 10 years sounds about right.

David Smith
David Smith
1 month ago

The longer and harder they block, the more it is perceived as an occupation, and the more it plays into the indy movement’s hands. Why not call their bluff and agree to it? That would settle the issue forever pretty much. Unless they think they’ll lose…

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