Sunday, 8 May 2011


The SNP's 69 MSPs
David Cameron, in the immediate aftermath of the landslide SNP election victory, was quick to say that he would personally campaign in Scotland for a NO vote in any independence referendum. Wiser heads appear now to have prevailed and Westminster is now saying that it would not oppose any successful referendum in favour of independence.

This is a fairly fundamental issue - the SNP (like Plaid in Wales) believes that Sovereignty resides with the people of Scotland - so if the Scottish Tories or the Scottish Labour Party or what's left of the Scottish Liberal Democrats want to campaign against independence then fair enough, but, it's not really the business of anyone from south of the border including Mr Cameron.

Whatever happens over the medium term, the Scotland Bill is currently being considered after the Calman Commission which examined the progress of devolution. Under the Bill, the Scottish Parliament will take charge of more of the income tax raised in Scotland. The proposed new powers would be combined with a cut in the block grant, currently about £31 billion, which Scotland receives from the UK government, the SNP wants to strengthen the bill to give it more economic teeth.

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