Sturgeon’s independence plans crushed as London holds ‘strong hand’ over referendum rights

Sturgeon: Expert says UK government ‘has the strong hand’

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Senior Fellow Akash Paun insisted that Nicola Sturgeon must be wary of Westminster’s power in their bid for independence. While speaking on TRT World, Mr Paun argued Westminster has the ultimate say on Scotland’s independence. Mr Paun said: “A problem that the Scottish Government faces is that legally speaking it is really the UK Government in Westminster that has the strong hand.

“They almost certainly would refer to the Supreme Court, or someone would refer to the Supreme Court, to let a bill pass to hold a referendum without Westminster agreement.

“The courts would probably block it in any case.

“Westminster could probably just legislate to make it absolutely crystal clear that any kind of referendum is not allowed.”

Following the Holyrood election earlier in May, Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP have been heavily criticised for continuing to talk about an independent Scotland. 

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Scottish Conservative leader Douglass Ross accused the party of misleading the public by claiming they were dedicated to focusing on recovering from the coronavirus pandemic. 

While speaking on Times Radio, Mr Ross insisted the Scottish people are more concerned about having life return back to normal than independence. 

Mr Ross insisted the SNP told voters that they would not consider support for them in the Holyrood election a vote for another Scottish independence referendum.

However, Mr Ross raged that Ms Sturgeon has already begun talking about a referendum possibility again.

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He said: “What I am disappointed in is Nicola Sturgeon saying during this campaign that a vote for the SNP would not be taken as a vote for a second referendum.

“As soon as the campaign was over and the ballot boxes had been shut they started talking about independence again.

“Before all the votes had been counted and declared Nicola Sturgeon had thrown away that promise and demanded another referendum all over again”

The former head of Downing Street, Luke Graham, argued that Boris Johnson should pass legislation to make it illegal for another Scottish referendum until 2034.

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Mr Graham, who was replaced in Number 10 by Oliver Lewis in February, said the Government should change the law to make referendums on the same subject a once-in-a-generation occurrence.

Given the last vote was in 2014, this would mean there would not be another one until 2034.

He did add that this legislation should not be passed within the year to ensure it does not look like a knee-jerk response to the SNP almost winning a majority.

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