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Tuesday 16 March 2021

Debate: The Time Is Right for Scottish Independence (online)

Politics &
Economics

The Scots didn’t vote for Brexit. They didn’t vote for the Conservatives. Their national leader, Nicola Sturgeon, has handled the coronavirus pandemic infinitely better than the incompetent UK leader, Boris Johnson. What’s more, once Brexit was finally done the London government arrogantly decided to keep control over funds that were previously given out by the EU rather than passing on that money to the devolved governments of the UK. In short, say proponents of Scottish independence, there’s no real reason for Scotland to remain in the Union. Opinion polls show, repeatedly, that a majority of likely voters would vote Yes to independence if a new referendum were to be held. And with the Scottish National Party likely to win a majority in the Scottish parliamentary elections in May, momentum towards holding Indyref2 is inexorably building. The time is finally right – let Scotland go its own way.

Are we really having this conversation again? Wasn’t the referendum of 2014 meant to settle this question, says proponents of the Union. Are Sturgeon and her sore losers simply going to keep pushing for fresh votes until they get the result they like? And while they keep the pressure up, they continue to hide the truth from the Scottish people. Because in fact, the gap between what Scotland spends and the revenues it generates has long been wider than the gap in the UK as a whole – and that gap will only grow once Westminster stops sending money to Holyrood. And there are further deceptions: The SNP’s reputation as an efficient, Scandinavian-style social democratic party of governance is wholly undermined by the failings of the Scottish education system and health service. Yes, the time is indeed finally right – to put this question to bed forever and recommit to each other as citizens of a compassionate, tolerant, ambitious and united kingdom.

 

Event Name

Debate: The Time Is Right for Scottish Independence (online)


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For The Motion
  • Lesley Riddoch

    Journalist, broadcaster and activist. Author of McSmorgasbord: What Post-Brexit Scotland Can Learn From The Nordics

  • Andrew Wilson

    Economist, businessman and former Member of the Scottish Parliament

Against the motion
  • Alex Massie

    Scotland Editor for The Spectator

  • Remaining speaker to be announced

 

Chair

To be announced.

 

Speakers are subject to change.


Location
  • Online event
Time
  • Tuesday 16 March 2021
  • 6pm to 7pm GMT



Speakers

For The Motion

Lesley Riddoch

Journalist, broadcaster and activist. Author of McSmorgasbord: What Post-Brexit Scotland Can Learn From The Nordics


Journalist, broadcaster and activist. She was named the 2020 Scottish Independence Campaigner of the Year by the Scottish Independence Foundation (SIF) and is the author of many books including McSmorgasbord: What Post-Brexit Scotland Can Learn From The Nordics. She also writes a column for The Scotsman and The National.

Andrew Wilson

Economist, businessman and former Member of the Scottish Parliament


Economist, businessman and former Member of the Scottish Parliament. He is a founding partner at strategic communications firm Charlotte Street Partners and chairs the Sustainable Growth Commission reporting to the First Minister of Scotland.
Against the motion

Alex Massie

Scotland Editor for The Spectator


Scotland Editor for The Spectator, and political columnist for The Times and The Sunday Times. He is a regular contributor to BBC politics shows including Question Time, Daily Politics and Radio 4's Any Questions?

Remaining speaker to be announced


 

Chair

To be announced.

 

Speakers are subject to change.