Don’t Take the YES Vote for Granted!

Many people are now clamoring for another independence referendum, and as quickly as possible. They believe that the UK’s vote to leave the EU virtually guarantees that YES will win an indy2 Referendum, and that Scotland can become an independent country and member of the EU before the 2 year divorce period is completed for the UK to leave the EU.

1,617,989 people voted yes in 2014 (44.7%) and 2,001,926 people voted no in 2014 (55.3%). In the EU Referendum 1,661,191 voted to remain a member of the EU (62%) and 1,018,322 voted to leave the EU (38%). Various polls since the EU referendum this week have indicated that up to 500,000 no voters would now vote yes in a future referendum so an Independent Scotland can remain a member of the European Union, yes would have maybe 54% of the vote. All good news if you are a supporter of the SNP, and a supporter of Scottish Independence. But is it enough!

My opinion is that many YES voters voted to leave the EU, for a lot of different reasons, but one reason that comes up is that while they remain YES voters to Scottish Independence, why would they then want to vote to join another union while leaving the one they are currently in. For many YES voters it just doesn’t make sense, I tend to agree with them even where my leave vote has different reasons attached to it.

I appreciate that we are only a week on from the historic EU vote and emotions remain very high, our politics within the UK are pretty much in the toilet, the Tories and the Labour Party are having internal civil wars and the SNP are pretty much fighting hard to garner support for Scotland in the EU. The issue here though is that there is no guarantee that all Yes and Leave voters will vote Yes and join the EU if that is what is on the offer in another referendum. I have read enough comments on social media, on Facebook and some comments on this blog to indicate that any rush into indy2 could be a big mistake.

It is not so long ago that the SNP were against EU membership, only adopting the policy in 1988. As many as between 30 to 40% of SNP members don’t support membership of the EU, do the previous no voters bring enough votes to provide a safe margin in another indy ref? I’m really not so sure. For many within the SNP it remains inconsistent to leave one union for another as I noted. Some argue that Scotland would have more influence in the UK parliament than they would the parliament in Brussels, for some there is a fear that the EU will move ever closer to a more federal United States of Europe run by the same vested interests that run it now.

This makes another referendum too soon a very risky proposition in my opinion; the stakes are maybe just too high to rush into another right now and we have too much to lose. I remain a passionate YES voter and will seriously need to be convinced about an independent Scotland joining the EU but if we lose another independence referendum so soon after 2014 then it is off the table for the foreseeable future, probably my lifetime and that I feel means we have to take it a little slower, the SNP have to take it a little slower.

Let’s see how it pans out. Will the EU survive the Brexit? Will the UK and therefore Scotland flourish outside the EU? Will the Remain No voters really come over to Yes? There are a lot of questions needing a bit more evidence to convince me that a quick referendum is the way. I also think that any decision on an independent Scotland joining the EU has to be by referendum and not on the basis of a yes vote only.

However, a quick referendum might just be taking the Yes vote for granted.

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22 comments

  1. Alan

    Dinnae be daft. The whole point of Scottish independence in Europe is to repatriate powers from Westminister. Including the power to decide on Europe ourselves, not as part of an United Kingdom.

    Recent polls/surveys show about 8% of no voters have gone yes, whilst about 4% of yes voters have switched to no. About 9% of No voters have shifted to don’t know, as have 4% of Yes voters. Seems to me that Yes has remained in roughly the same place, whilst No has taken a couple of gut blows. Therefore, the campaign is Yes’ to lose this time.

    I’ll concede that euroscepticism isn’t gone from Scotland, but – actually, I’d like to redefine some words. Europhile = pro-EU, eurosceptic = neutral, europhobe = anti-EU. Nigel Farage is clearly an europhobe, not an eurosceptic. Anyway, however eurosceptic we are, I don’t think europhobia is high in Scotland.

    • Anonymous

      Alan

      I don’t think I’m daft, not all the time anyway. I agree that the whole point of independence is to repatriate powers from Westminster and as I noted then have a referendum on membership of EU.

      My point is really that there are some people in the SNP, and I feel there is a perception, and a danger in them assuming that yes voters will vote for a campaign of independence in the EU. A campaign of independence then a short debate about the EU is the way to go in my humble opinion.

      I don’t think YES are in that strong a position yet either. What Scotland Thinks and Scot Goes Pop put yes on around 53% in a referendum, that’s not enough to overcome the next Project Fear. The U.K. won’t use the pound the next time as that one has flown now but they will hammer the UK market and England being by a huge margin Scotland largest trading partner which Davidson started this week in FMQs. Won’t effect my yes vote but it will many others so my view, my take on it is to take it a little slower, answer the questions, see what happens. We don’t have a choice as another no vote pretty much kills it off for a long time.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment.

      Bruce

  2. Gary F

    My view is still the same. The EU for the vast majority of Scots is a non issue.

    It’s the economy stupid! Nothing has changed, currency and fiscal arguments will decide the swing voter and I can’t for the life of me see how anyone thinks an economic argument is going to be made in the next few years. We stand on the brink of financial crisis bigger than 2008, brexit has probably accelerated the impending sovereign debt crisis. My view is that crisis will destroy the euro and collapse the EU with it.

    The euro can only survive by structural changes to the political and fiscal positions of the member states involved – a United States type scenario. This position is not hidden it is easily accessed via the ECB website.

    I urge you all to look at the share prices of Deutsche Bank and pretty much all the Italian Banks sitting at prices below 2008 levels. Deutsche Bank itself has derivative exposure of approximately 96 trillion.

    We are supposedly going to suffer a slow down in economic growth and the supply glut of oil around the world is getting worse with oil prices predicted to fall again. So our deficit will probably grow before the referendum.

    It is my belief that if we leave the UK to go into ever closer political union with the EU the pound is no longer an option. There is no chance of selling this to the over 65’s.

    So do I think calling a referendum now us a good idea – no not really. I agree with you that losing a second one will put independence off the table for my lifetime.

    • Anonymous

      Gary

      I think you’re correct in that the arguments next time round will come round to the economy, esp our trade with England, and the currency. I suppose a lot will depend on the EU surviving in it’s current form and that is not guaranteed in any shape or form right now, maybe too many don’t knows around political union, economy, UK prospects etc. There are some people who think once the dust settles the UK will actually do fine as it’s the 5th largest economy in the world and no one has done this before, say the UK was a huge success, which I hope it is for all our sakes in many ways, then the EU falls in my opinion. EU countries will look at the UK and possibly think time to go.

      There was a report today or yesterday saying that oil prices are now set to rise as there is a slow down in the USA but I don’t think the so called experts know their arse from their elbow anymore, everyone is reacting to events and can’t tell an hour ahead let alone months. I also think we have to go into any future referendum with there being a Scottish Currency plan, nothing else will do. Sticking to the pound narrative is a loser in every way, I’ll stick to my take it slow and lets see how things pan out.

      Thanks for commenting Gary.

      Bruce

      • Gary F

        Bruce

        Google $10 oil and then read the Bloomberg article from three days ago. This guy has been talking about 10 – 20 dollar oil a wee while now. Not sure if it’s going that low but there is most definitely over supply problems that are not going to be good for oil industry.

        Have aways believed that independence without our own currency was a bit pointless. Would like to see the currency in operation a few years before independence though.

        • Anonymous

          Gary

          Oil I am not up on to be honest, you read so many different things. I article I saw was on Facebook from the Independent. I totally agree with you on currency, I argued at the last referendum in 2014 that what YES were arguing was federalism rather than independence due to the currency issue and the view taken on the monarchy. They should have had a plan B there is no doubt about that, they expected England just to bend over and in many ways they called YES bluff. What should have happened was as soon as the scumbags said no currency union YES should have said fine, we go with a Scottish pound and we will take our share of assets and liabilities, cheers. YES was not different enough and a lot of us said that at the time.

          Thanks

          Bruce

          • Gary

            Cheers for the link Bruce. With Goldman Sachs pushing a price rise I have immediately stuck a short trade on oil!! 🙂

            My major concern along this line is that Aramco are planning the biggest IPO in history to raise capital allowing economic diversification. My take from that is that they know oil prices are now out of OPEC’s control due to the low margin requirements of fracking. I can’t for the life of me understand why they would sell it off if they expected prices to rise back significantly higher any time soon.

            Hope I’m wron

            • grumpyscottishman

              Gary

              To be honest I tend to think that they don’t have a clue what they are doing. I don’t understand it but I really don’t think they do either. No on knows what is going to happen, will the UK economy tank or boom, there are people who argue both. Who knows. It is interesting that the voters decided to give the establishment a real kicking, even if it turns our worse for the voters, they gave the establishment a kicking and they are all resigning, running about like headless chickens, fighting with each other. Just shows how crap they all are.

              Thanks for commenting.

              Bruce

  3. Helena Brown

    You are aware that EU residents were unable to vote in the EU Referendum thus comparing those who voted in our referendum and those who voted in the present one can not be compared easily. There also seems to have been a small matter of people occupying second homes and voting in the Scot Ref along with a goodly amount who now live to the South but are still on the voters role.

  4. Anonymous

    Helena

    Haven’t see any break down and they could make a difference in any indy2 vote and that would not be a bad thing. EU citizens should have been allowed to vote in the EU referendum, pure and simple but the Tories are the Tories.

    Thanks for commenting.

    Bruce

  5. lanark

    History seems to be repeating itself in a way. By the mid 16th century, Scotland was either heading for a union with France or England. Today it seems it is either England or the EU.

    I have wanted Scottish independence for so long, I will vote for it in pretty much any circumstances. I still have huge misgivings about the EU but are they bigger than my misgivings about the UK?

    I remain hopeful that a Yes vote will at least give us the freedom to achieve freedom.

    • Anonymous

      Lanark

      Because of the shit we are fed daily no one knows the truth anymore. I don’t really trust the EU or Westminster but I suppose the EU has less acts to grind in some ways. If we choose independence, which I hope we do, then you know that trade with England will be made very very difficult for us and there will be a border etc. I could live with it but I would prefer an independent Scotland not rushing into any union with anyone to be honest.

      Thanks for commenting.

      Bruce

  6. Assaf Hershko

    It’s a false dichotomy. The EU is NOT a “union” in the sense that the UK is a “union”.

    The EU is an organisation of sovereign states. Whatever misgivings you may have on it, an independent Scotland which is an EU member will be VASTLY freer than a Scotland that is a region in the UK.

    Would you like to be ruled from Westminster, or a country such as Sweden, Finland, Germany, France, etc (all EU members, and yet sovereign states)? Isn’t it clear to you that there’s no real comparison?

    • Anonymous

      Assaf

      My yes vote to Scottish independence is assured but the EU is a different thing altogether. I am aware that the EU is a political construct based on mutual agreement and to be a member you have to accept the fundamentals of common interest as the members perceive.

      However, that does not take away from the real need of reform within the EU and a change of direction away from the neo liberal consensus as that is failing and will be rejected by more countries as time goes on. The EU is at a knife edge, TTIP, the euro, unemployment etc cannot go on longer term as EU citizens are rejecting the establishment model, as Scots have in Westminster.

      Any decision about an independent Scotland joining the EU has to be by referendum and the result cannot be taken for granted.

      Thanks for taking time to comment.

      Bruce

      • Assaf Hershko

        Thanks for your answer as well 🙂

        I think the point is one of priorities. As the swing in the polls (from “no” to “yes”) suggests, there is a sizeable number of people who’ll vote to leave the UK because they are very angry with Brexit (i.e. want to remain in the EU). If our message to these people is muddled (i.e. if we decouple independence from EU membership), we’ll lose many of them.

        The right way forward, I believe, is to come together on a common ground. Indy+EU, so we can win the damn vote, and then work to reform the EU (which I personally do believe is fundamentally a force for good) from within. If we can’t – we can leave at a later stage. But we have to get independence first, and EU membership is an important stepping stone for getting the swing from the last (failed) ref.

        • Anonymous

          Assaf

          I think a lot of care has to be taken on the issue of the EU. It’s estimated that 40% of yes voters voted leave and while many remain voters have said they will vote yes next time it is both very close to call and you can’t write off Project Fear 2 which my next blog will touch on.

          I am very much for the idea of the EU but not without reform and a future Indy ref can’t be a yes and yes EU, independence has to be fought on its own merits or it may lose again. The intention has be an EU referendum. But there are a few important issues to resolve first which I am writing about just now and will very much value your opinion on once I get it straight.

          Thanks for commenting.

          Bruce

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