So, First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon has said that SNP supporters should focus on winning people over to Yes rather than the timing of Indyref2.
Is this putting the next vote into the long grass, or are the SNP playing the long game while trying to appease their members and supporters of independence.
We know that Pete Wishart MP is in no rush to hold another vote, Keith Brown, the new deputy leader of the SNP, wants people to be ready when the time comes, and there are different voices within the wider yes movement who vary in their views on when. Robin McAlpine of Common Space notes that
” “There’s no more dangerous move than marching your troops back down the hill again, because they are fizzing with adrenalin and have nowhere to put it.”
Libby Brooks in the Guardian last month noted that,
I believe there is a risk in delaying too long, people get used to things, others will walk away frustrated and dejected. Brexit will be a disaster if the experts are correct, but until it happens no one knows really, but I do go with the disaster view. Many with yes leaning sympathies are EU sceptic for a number of reasons but if Trump gets his way on tariff free trade then the game changes again. While tariff free trade is unlikely, money talks so who knows if a not so bad Brexit weakens the yes vote.
Overall I don’t think the SNP believe they can win a referendum any time soon, not based on anything other than discussion with some members I know and my gut feeling, but there lies the paradox. If yes supporting non SNP members feel betrayed the party could lose votes, losing votes could lose seats, and that diminishes the political opportunity to even hold the vote.
I don’t envy Nicola Sturgeon at all and I don’t have any answers. This year for Indy 2 is just not going to happen, probably 2019 is not in the SNP plans. 2020 then has to be the date because any later I feel means it just might not happen at all anytime in the near future as events might just take over