The supreme court in the UK announced this week that it has ruled there to be no legal basis for a Scottish independence referendum taking place without the consent of Westminster.
As Statista’s Martin Armstrong reports, the ruling now puts the issue “back in the political court”, as summarized by one Scottish MP, with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirming in a press conference that the SNP is now likely to campaign in the next election solely on the question of independence – creating a de-facto referendum, with a convincing win then used as evidence for the legitimate need for a second vote on the issue.
Taking a different approach, Alex Salmond, former SNP first minister and now leader of the Alba party, has said in response to the supreme court ruling that nationalists should now embark on “a civic campaign of protest and action”.
In London, Scottish secretary Alister Jack reacted to the news, urging politicians in the country to now refocus:
“People in Scotland want both their governments to be concentrating all attention and resources on the issues that matter most to them”, he said, citing a stable economy, energy bills and the NHS as matters he feels are more important.
As the latest polling figures show, however, while a slim majority of people in Scotland are against independence, the country is still starkly divided on the matter.
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In the first referendum in 2014, 45 percent of voters opted to support the push for independence, but looking at the average of the four most recent polls that share could increase to 49 percent if a new vote was held now – suggesting it is still something which matters a lot to a large proportion of Scottish society. A second vote for now though, will have to wait.