The Sunday Times at the weekend had a Panelbase poll of Scotland, their first since the general election. It doesn’t look like Westminster voting intention was asked, but they have figures for Holyrood constituency vote intention, I think the first figures we’ve had from anyone since way back in March (and the first from Panelbase since the Holyrood election in 2016). Topline figures there are SNP 42%(-5), CON 28%(+6), LAB 22%(-1), LDEM 6%(-2). These changes are from the 2016 election. The SNP continue to have a solid lead, but it’s no longer those 20 or 30 point leads we used to see back in 2016.

On Independence the topline figures were YES 40%(-1), NO 53%(nc), Don’t know 6%(nc). Changes are since June, and obviously don’t suggest any meaningful change. NO seem to have consolidated a double digit lead, not the sort of lead that couldn’t be overturned in a referendum campaign, but not the sort of lead I’d imagine would encourage Nicola Sturgeon to push for one too early.

On that question of timing for a referendum, 17% of peple would like a referendum in the immediate future, while Britain is negotiating to leave the EU, 26% would like a referendum after Britain has finishing negotiating to leave the EU, 58% don’t want one in the “next few years”. As I’ve written before, questions like this are very vulnerable to the timebands you offer, but when you add up the pro and anti answers they tend to fall in similar proportions to support for independence – those who’d like independence tend to favour a referendum on independence sometime soonish, those who don’t want independence anyway don’t particularly want a vote on it either. Full tabs for the Panelbase poll are here.

There is also a new YouGov poll of Wales, conducted for ITV and Cardiff University, and also the first since the general election. Westminster voting intention figures stand at CON 32%(-2), LAB 50%(+1), LDEM 4%(-1), Plaid 8%(-2), UKIP 3%(+1). Labour have strengthened their position marginally from what was already a very strong position.

Voting intentions for the Welsh Assembly are:
Constituency: CON 25%, LAB 43%, LDEM 5%, Plaid 19%, UKIP 4%
Regional: CON 23%, LAB 40%, LDEM 5%, Plaid 19%, UKIP 5%
According to Roger Scully if these figures were repeated at an actual Assembly election then on a uniform swing Labour would narrowly regain their majority with 31 Assembly seats.


354 Responses to “New Scottish and Welsh polling”

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  1. Good evening all from a mild and breezy Winchester

    First?

    Still solid figures for the SNP but would had been interesting to see Westminster VI for Scotland in light of ol Corby’s election bounce.

  2. The independence VI will probably start to swing back and forward the nearer we get to leaving the EU. There is still a lot of mileage in the independence question but for now it’s sort of taking a back seat while Brexit is in the limelight.

  3. Looking at the VI for Holyrood there appears to be some drift from the SNP to the Tories..presumably they will be Brexit supporting Tartan Tories from the North East going over to Ruth!!

  4. Exciting election in Norway, knife edge stuff

  5. The liberals are hovering around the 4% threshold, if they finish even one vote over 4% the centre right continue in govt. If they fall short by even one vote there will be a new govt

  6. If SLab appoint a Corbynite as their new leader I reckon their ratings will rapidly improve.

  7. @mikepearce

    Why?

  8. I think there is a real appetite for left wing politics in Scotland. Dugdale was just another Blairite. She was never going to appeal.
    Corbyn was discouraged by her to visit Scotland during the election campaign.
    That was a big mistake.

    If Corbyn remains leader backed upon a like minded SLab leader I think Labour will do very well in a Scotland.

  9. Mike

    I think SLAB need more than a Corbynista leader

  10. Can’t say the choice of leader seems very inspiring. But then, I rather liked Kezia Dugdale.

  11. I think we should really see the Scottish figures in the context of Brexit.

    As with the rest of the UK the Vote to leave has created a huge fault line that overshadows everything. I think it’s safe to say we have more than passed peak SNP but I also tend to think we are at peak Tory too.

    Looking across the tables, it is the SNP and Tories who have retained most of their vote in both Holyrood and Westminster and who score clearly highest for the two sides in both referendums.

    The SNP is clearly No 1 for both Yes and Remain, the Tories for No and Leave.

    Where elections may well be won or lost is over tactical voting. If Labour voters go over to Corbyn rather than vote SNP then the Tories could pick up seats.

    Equally Tories who vote SNP to stop Labour at Westminster vote Tory over Independence or Brexit could help Labour.

    When in 2016 the SNP dominated the Yes vote it got most of that at the expense of the Greens, the other Yes party coming first in almost ever constituency.

    But for the best part of forty years before that it had come second in almost as many and usually got around half a dozen.

    At Westminster a swing of less than 10% can see the SNP lose three quarters of it’s seats.

    At Holyrood with PR it becomes harder for the SNP to government but without a LibDem recovery who else can?

    Drop below 60 seats and it gets hard for the SNP to govern even with Green support even as a minority government, but realistically neither the Tories or Labour look likely to get as many as fifty.

    Effectively that means the only viable partner at Holyrood for either Labour or the Tories is……The Tories or Labour and that’s not happening.

    How do you govern Scotland when close to 90% of the seats are spread between three Parties who will only ever reluctantly pair up to stop the third Governing.

    Even if a coalition could be formed how would people feel if the Largest Party was effectively looked out go Government by two, or more, Parties it had beaten.

    There is nothing wrong or improper about smaller Parties uniting to keep the larger out but how would the public like it.

    Given the impact of the coalition on the Libdems i think politicians would be wary of a deal that even if legitimate the public disapproved of.

    I am not sure if there was any polling on it but I wonder how the public would have reacted to a Labour/LibDem coalition when Cameron’s tories had more seats that Labour after an election.

    Perceptions matter.

    Peter.

  12. As OldNat pointed out yesterday, the Panelbase tables kept on appearing and then vanishing off the screen. I’m glad he said it as I thought I was going mad (“I’m sure it was there a second ago”). Anyway the tables finally emerged this afternoon:

    They’re a bit odd. Partly because ST Scotland seem to have been a bit mean and have not paid for either a Westminster VI or (even stranger) for a regional VI for Hollyrood – which is what actually determines the result of the election.

    But some of the questions are a bit odd too such as the one as to whether Salmond or Sturgeon is the better FM[1]. Presumably they just wanted a headline to attack one of them. The variable policy on DK options is also a bit flawed[2] and the questions on health, education etc[3] are meaningless without asking equivalent questions elsewhere or whether people think that the services actually are better/worse[4]. Again the options are poorly worded and there’s no DK one.

  13. The oddest question however is:

    Which comes closest to your view?

    Scotland should become an independent country, outside the United Kingdom 38%

    Scotland should remain part of the United Kingdom, but keep the devolved Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh 43%

    Scotland should remain part of the United Kingdom, while getting rid of the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh. 19%

    (Again there’s no DK). The 19% looks rather high – and has been commented on as such. The most recent equivalent figure for Wales (where devolution has always been less popular) is only 13%[5] and unlike in Wales there’s been no campaign for abolition. And it appears to be supported not just by Con (41%) but many supporters of the Parties of devolution – Lab (21%) and LD (20%).

    Some of this may be due to the poisonous atmosphere of Scottish politics since the referendum where the tendency of opposition politics and much of the media has been to denigrate anything even remotely connect to the SNP (look at the reaction to the new bridge). But I wonder if there is bad wording involved as well. Do some of those replying just want the SP sited elsewhere than Edinburgh? Or it to move to a new building?

  14. [1] There are poor answer options as well. In this case ‘Equally good’, ‘Equally bad’, ‘Don’t know’ and ‘Meh’ are all rolled up into one. Unsurprisingly it gets 50%.

    [2] For example there isn’t one for When do you think another Scottish independence referendum should be held?
    , just two overlapping options in the next 18 months plus another “There should not be another Scottish independence referendum in the next few years
    ” for everything else.

    [3] Not to mention that most of the powers regarding “Scotland’s economy” still lie with Westminster (and the wider world).

    [4] These questions always suffer from the tendency of older voters to think things are worse than when they were young (there’s a very steep age gradient).

    [5] http://blogs.cardiff.ac.uk/electionsinwales/2017/03/06/the-bbcicm-poll-1-devolution/

  15. 7% of the vote left and it looks like it’s all over for the opposition, liberals holding steady at 4.2% govt continues with reduced majority.

  16. Roger Mexico

    I agree with much of your commentary. Perhaps the important point is not that this is a “Panelbase poll” – but a “Sunday Times commissioned questions” that Panelbase conducted for them.

    Any commissioning agent that actually wanted to ascertain the current state of Scottish politics would have asked about the VI for Holyrood regions as well as constituencies – and Westminster as well.

    It would be unwise to assume that the ST didn’t incur the minimal additional cost of asking those other questions. It may well be that they did, but didn’t like the answers and refused permission for Panelbase to publish the responses.

    Whether the ST was partial in the questions that it asked, or in releasing the data for all the questions it did ask is something we will never know – though it is legitimate to have suspicions about the presentation of a poll from such a source!

    I am equally open to the idea that the ST didn’t ask the other VI questions because it knows little, and cares less, about Scottish public opinion, and simply wants to propagate its own agenda.

    That is common practice among media outlets (and political parties).

  17. Fair summary Peter Cairns.

    Labour amendment on Brexit Withdrawal bill defeated 296-318.

    2nd Reading passed with a comfortable majority of 36 (326-290)

  18. I suppose looking to 2020+ we could see a result that meant Corbyn needed an SNP C&S to get into Westminster and Sturgeon needed a Labour C&S to stay in Bute House.

    to late at night to crunch the numbers but it might be a possible. Unless one of the two governments fall first Holyrood is May 21, Westminster May 22.

    I could see it working the other way round if the SNP got 25 or more MP’s, but it would be unlikely if Holyrood came first.

    Equally if a deal was done I suspect both Labour and the SNP would get the same treatment as the LibDems over the coalition.

    The SNP would probably be okay as it’s opposition is split and a lot of Labour voters, if not members don’t really dislike the SNP. I think a majority in England would be angry with Labour which would put them in the invidious position of being in power and beholden to an alliance the public disliked.

    So even if the sums added up it would be very unlikely.

    Peter.

  19. Peter

    After the DUP deal anything is possible. Labour/SNP deal would look quite tame by comparison

  20. Though I’m not sure the SON would be able to do the silent partner act as well as the DUP is doing at the moment

  21. Somerjohn

    “Or perhaps “You really should get your facts right before you post such nonsense” is what passes for pleasantry in Brexitland.”

    So at last you understand what Leavers like myself have had to put up with day after day for months now from Remainers like you and some others.

    Yesterday revealed a great deal about you.

  22. Good result for the Government last night 326 to 290. No Conxercvative voted against the Government, 7 Labour MPs voted with the Government, another 13 abstained.

    However the next stage will not be so easy.

  23. SEA CHANGE

    Nice to see you back.

  24. Peter Cairns

    Another good post Peter (don’t get upset).

  25. @mikepearce

    “I think there is a real appetite for left wing politics in Scotland. Dugdale was just another Blairite. She was never going to appeal.”

    We’ll attitudinal polling ( you can find it summarised at WhatScotlandThinks ) doesn’t suggest huge differences of outlook in Scotland compared to the rest of GB although Scottish voters have in recent years voted differently.

    SLab campaigned under Dugdale in the 2016 Election on What could be described as a Corbyn type tax and spend manifesto. Raising the top rate of tax back to 50p and increasing the basic income tax paid by everybody by 20% with a 1p increase in the basic rate. It also proposed abolishing Council Tax and replacing it with more progressive property tax. The extra income was to be spent on education, health services etc. And, although not in the manifesto as it was a Scottish GE, SLab party politeness against renewing Trident.

    The 2016 Election was not an overwhelming success for SLab and Corbyn mania in 2017 only took them back in terms of voted to where they were in 2015 IIRC ( is there any evidence that Dugdale banned Corbyn from Scotland a he did actually make at least one speech here?) So it would be interesting to know which type of left wing policies will give SLab this connection with this untapped thirst for them in Scotland.

  26. That should be ” policy” not “politeness” in respect of Trident!

  27. TOH
    “Good result for the Government last night 326 to 290”
    It was a result for common sense, but probabaly not one to be interpreted with any partisanship. Those who voted or spoke against the bill, the latter including a number of senior tories, did so for the risk or actual damage that might be done to constitutional and democratic process, including that of precedent in the future of ministers amending legislation without parliamentary scrutiny or debate. That continues to be a risk.
    Those labour members who voted for it,aswell as some who genuinely support it or an amended version of it, included some who did so because, like Caoline Flint, they assumed their constituents had instructed them to do so by voting Remain.
    How good a night it was for the Government, or for the country, depends on how well the Government responds to this and to the committee stages.

  28. Hireton,

    “That should be ” policy” not “politeness” in respect of Trident!”

    No Politeness works, unlike the UK Party they didn’t want Trident but they didn’t put it their manifesto because they were being polite!

    Peter.

  29. @petercairns

    :)

  30. JOHN PILGRIM

    @”How good a night it was for the Government, or for the country, depends on how well the Government responds to this and to the committee stages.”

    I agree.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brexit-bill-theresa-may-12-rebel-conservative-mps-henry-viii-eu-withdrawal-european-union-a7941836.html

  31. AW
    “On that question of timing for a referendum, 17% of peple would like a referendum in the immediate future, while Britain is negotiating to leave the EU, 26% would like a referendum after Britain has finishing negotiating to leave the EU, 58% don’t want one in the “next few years”. As I’ve written before, questions like this are very vulnerable to the timebands you offer, but when you add up the pro and anti answers they tend to fall in similar proportions to support for independence – those who’d like independence tend to favour a referendum on independence sometime soonish, those who don’t want independence anyway don’t particularly want a vote on it either.”

    I disagree with this analysis. I, for one, am in favour of Scottish independence, but certainly not in favour of having another referendum anytime soon, due to the danger of losing. I doubt I am alone in holding to that position.
    Similarly, I also know some who are against independence who would be delighted to see another referendum soon, in order to have the whole thing put on the back burner ‘for ever’ (or at least for a generation).
    I agree that this is all ‘anecdotal’, but to assume that all those who are against holding another referendum in the next few years are against independence is, quite frankly, sloppy thinking.

    As for last night’s HoC vote, it might have been a good night for the UK Government, but selling democracy down the river, allowing ‘Henry VIII’ clauses (well known democrat, he!!!) is something Parliament and the UK as a whole will, I suspect, come to regret.

    And the UK Government’s continuing refusal at this stage to enter into any discussion at all about where the ‘repatriated powers’ will end up is a slap in the face to those who approve of the devolved administrations. Lovers of the UK will, I suspect, come to regret that as well.

    Have a good day – while you can!

  32. @colin

    It is interesting that John Penrose, a member of the ERG, ( the Tory backbench group for committed Brexiters) has joined with Dominic Grieve in tabling amendments. The UK Government is going to have to show some deft Parliamentary management skills over the next few months, something which has not been very evident so far.

  33. @john b

    “And the UK Government’s continuing refusal at this stage to enter into any discussion at all about where the ‘repatriated powers’ will end up is a slap in the face to those who approve of the devolved administrations. Lovers of the UK will, I suspect, come to regret that as well.”

    It hasn’t really entered into any discussions. It had refused to call a meeting of the JMC – the committee which is meant to be the mechanism for the UL government and the devolved administrations to discuss Brexit – since February and has now shifted its position to saying that it will call one but won’t say when.

    The Labour Party amendments to the Withdrawal Bill include one which would automatically ensure that currently devolved areas such as agriculture and fishing remain devolved rather than being “re-reserved” as currently planned by the UK Government pending possible “re-devolution”. It will be interesting to see what line “Ruth Davidson’s Conservatives” take in the
    debates on that.

  34. HIRETON

    I’m sure they won’t satisfy everyone.

    Butt DD asked for suggested mechanisms to improve Parliamentary oversight of changes to absorbed EU Regs.

    Grieve & others have provided some.

    Shouldn’t be a problem.

  35. New ICM/Guardian poll out:

    “Labour: 42% (no change from Guardian/ICM two weeks ago)

    Conservatives: 42% (no change)

    Lib Dems: 7% (no change)

    Ukip: 4% (up 1)

    Greens: 3% (no change)”

    Also polling on the Union:

    “With Brexit putting strain on the union with Scotland, and also emboldening those calling for a referendum on a united Ireland, we also asked people what they would feel if they saw parts of the UK breaking away. The question said that some people think Brexit could lead to the break-up of the UK over the next 10 to 20 years and asked people if they would be pleased or disappointed if these outcomes occurred within the next 20 years. Here are the results.

    Scotland voting for independence

    Pleased: 24%

    Disappointed: 51%

    No view: 25%

    Ireland [sic] voting to join the Republic

    Pleased: 22%

    Disappointed: 42%

    No view: 36%

    Wales voting for independence

    Pleased: 15%

    Disappointed: 56%

    No view: 30%

    Wales voting for independence in that time scale is not seen as at all probable, but we included it for the sake of fairness.”

    Also polling on the impact of Brexit on the economy:

    “Impact on the British economy

    Positive: 32%

    Negative: 42%

    No difference: 14%

    Net: -10 (up 3 from ICM in July)

    Impact on your personal finances

    Positive: 13%

    Negative: 30%

    No difference: 41%

    Net: -17 (up 3)

    Impact on life in Britain generally

    Positive: 35%

    Negative: 34%

    No difference: 18%

    Net: +1 (up 2)”

  36. John Pilgrim

    Totally agree with your 9.13. My post on the vote was not meant to be partisan hence the last sentence.

    HIRETON

    Thanks for poll details. Not much change then.

  37. It’s the economy, stupid is one of those old saws that could be reflected in polling in the coming months.

    The jump back in inflation to 2.9% will maintain the downward pressure on real wages and spending power. But what struck me this morning was a couple of economists’ comments suggesting that what we’re seeing is the rate of inflation lagging well behind the exchange rate. In other words, the effect of the post-referendum sterling depreciation is only starting to be felt. This is Andrew Sentence (former MPC member):

    With very well-developed and complex supply chains, it can take a number of years for a decline in the exchange rate, which raises import prices, to feed through fully to consumers.

    While Rupert Seggins (no, I haven’t heard of him either) has highlighted a chart showing that core inflation (which has reached a 6-year high of 2.7%) closely tracks the exchange rate, with a 2-year lag. His chart suggests that core inflation will peak at 4% next June.

    If the economic background over the next 12 months is of a continuing squeeze on real wages, I think that will have a profound effect on polling figures. Especially if reduced consumption and a Brexit-anticipating investment slump sees growth go negative.

  38. somerjohn

    We’re f*cked.

  39. but…………… looking on the bright side I’ll get free tv licensing in a couple of years.

    [On the other hand I hate telly.]

  40. The core problem for the Government is yet again one of their own making and goes all the way back to Cameron.

    We are dealing with the biggest change since Devolution and given the limited interest shown in that in England, the larger Country in the UK, we should have tried to create a national consensus.

    Cameron should have created a Royal Commission on the EU to see if we could get cross party support for changes rather than the referendum.

    Before he called it he should have tried to get cross Party support for a vision of our role in it to convince people to Remain.

    After Brexit May should have tried to built cross Party support and with the devolved administrations agreement on the Brexit we wanted.

    Parliament should have decidedn when to invoke article 50 and what relationship we wanted afterwards, not the PM.

    Hell we have been talking about students as an immigration problem for a decade and it’s only now more than a year after the leave vote and months into negotiations that we actual do any research into the real figures.

    From start, right up to now and probably to the end the Tories have no just treated this as a Party politics issue.

    It’s been handled by Downing Street, with the key decisions and direction being made by the then and current PM and a small circle of advisors and confidants.

    This was then presented to Parliament and the Country as fait accompli!

    The heart of our problem is Poor Judgement, Bad Political Decisions, Inept Management, Lack of Clarity and terrible Presentation.

    Deciding the preferred National Course in near isolation and then Declaring it as the only way forward and calling for Unity while, accusing those who question it’s wisdom to be “Enemies of the People!” has been a shambles.

    Cameron was ill prepared and started it to fend of Tory Party critics and spike UKIP never thinking he would lose so the background wasn’t done.

    He didn’t build a consensus round what the UK wanted from the EU because he didn’t want to give opponents any of the limelight and he wasn’t bothered preparing for a Leave vote that wasn’t going to happen.

    May from start to finish, just like telling her Cabinet that there was going to be an election about half an hour before it was announced, has tried to almost rule by decree relying on slogans as a brick wall defence against debate…

    “Brexit means Brexit”, “Red White and Blue Brexit”, “Strong and Stable!”.

    You can believe Brexit is the right thing, you can believe that even if it hurts economically it is wort it to steer our own course, you can believe we were and never will be fully like the Continent, I don’t support any of these but others do.

    Failing to be honest about the second rate way the Tories have handled Brexit, because you support Brexit just looks silly.

    Peter.

  41. Peter

    That did amuse me, a larf a minute etc etc.

    No….. not really, you summed it up well. The whole thing has been, and continues to be, an utter debacle.

    The saddest thing for me – apart from the possibility that we are going to really do it – is that the 27 will surely just be glad to see the back of us. Especially given that the “us” in question is represented by a tory party which less than 30% of the electorate support and that, even when that may not the case after the next election they can be sure that they will return at some point.

    It is utterly mad.

    Nice to see the largest majority for “disappointed” if they left is for Wales. Personally I would be equally disappointed to lose Scotland but I do see the point for those who with to leave.

    I would prefer Ireland to unite but that looks pretty unlikely given that that the Northern bit can’t sort itself out on its own anyway.

  42. John B
    ” allowing ‘Henry VIII’ clauses ”
    Second reading doesn’t mean passed into law.

    Peter Cairns
    While I agree there has been a lot of bungling, we are where we are, and it’s no use crying over spilt milk.
    “The heart of our problem is Poor Judgement, Bad Political Decisions, Inept Management, Lack of Clarity and terrible Presentation.”
    and that extends to how the opposition and backbenchers have behaved.
    The general standard of MP’s general competence and knowledge of facts and of procedure is lamentable, and revealed daily in how they handle media interviews, let alone how they use social media.

  43. HIRETON “The UK Government is going to have to show some deft Parliamentary management skills over the next few months, something which has not been very evident so far.”

    I’d say the reverse is more true. The Government has managed critical votes fine, it is the opposition that is a shambles by conventional standards.

    They weren’t quite as split as in the vote against the whip on a Queen’s speech amendment.

    That one was so unprecedented that when it was first mooted and I looked for a past guide as to whether this might be seen as so egregious as to bring a conventional sanction to back benchers and not just the payroll vote, I failed to find a single incident where one had done so in a post-election situation since the war, never mind 49.

    The Conservatives, it may be remembered, had no rebels at all and nor did the DUP.

    This time we have around 21 defying the Labour whip, mostly from the Leave side this time, against Ken Clarke abstaining.

    If this is a lack of deft Parliamentary management skills on the Government side, I’d love to know what adjective you’d use for the Labour Party.

    Indeed, that’s my takeaway from the first few months since the election. I think the Government is far more secure than I originally held it was, because it has the Parliamentary discipline so crucial for a minority administration that Labour lacks.

  44. Neologisms have abounded since the calling of the referendum but I read my favourite today in a BTL comment in the Independent referring to TM as the Captain of the “Brexitanic”.
    On a more serious note if the Henry VIII clauses become law then future governments with larger majorities would see no reason not to use the same device for any purpose they wish, how can they be criticised, its been done before. This country has no constitution by which a properly enacted law can be struck down. Henry VIII clauses mean that ministers can act without constraint, and could for instance add a clause to ensure that their actions as a minister were not subject to judicial review proceedings. I am concerned because this is not about whether you trust this government on the EU or not this is about whether you trust every future government to act within the normal constraints we have come to expect from government.

  45. @peterw

    I was making no comment on Labour’s skills. I’m not sure why you think I should.

    Th point you are missing – perhaps because you have little experience of Parliament or parliamentary bills – is that the Government is now heading into the most dangerous territory for it of Committee stage in the Commons and then the Lords ( not forgetting LCM’s in the Welsh Assembly and Scottish Parliament).

    It is is at this stage where Tory backbench MPs will feel much more able to vote against the Government on key amendments rather than voting against the whole Bill in a Second Reading. You seem to have forgotten the history of the Government so far on related matters e.g that there would be no White Paper on Brexit and then caved in at the first sight of a Tory rebellion and that was before May lost her Parliamentary majority.

  46. @petercairns

    Yes and I think the failure of the UK Government to use the JMC in any way is indicative of a wider problem.

    Even at the level of low political tactics it would have been sensible to use that mechanism to at least be seen to be discussing issues and taking account of the devolved administrations’ views especially following May’s pronouncement about securing UK wide agreement on Brexit.

    As it is their handling of the JMC has led the Welsh and Scottish Government’s to make common cause and give their political opponents huge scope to criticise the UK Government for not living up to their promises. All totally unnecessary.

  47. “Governments” not “Government’s” in my last comment.

  48. People should read this linked article and consider the complications that will arise after Brexit, when the UK comes to sign trade deals. US Aircraft manufacturer Boeing has complained about a Belfast company operating with subsidies.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-41233257

    When the UK starts to set up trade deals with foreign governments, they will come with terms that might be very unattractive to UK companies. At the moment the EU deals with many trade issues, if the UK is signed up as part of the EU. With the EU out of the equation, UK government will have to resolve the issues themselves.

    I would not underestimate the trade issues that will arise with the EU after Brexit. The EU is difficult enought at the moment, but will become even more difficult after Brexit.

  49. @John B “Similarly, I also know some who are against independence who would be delighted to see another referendum soon, in order to have the whole thing put on the back burner ‘for ever’ (or at least for a generation).”

    Absolutely. I am in that crowd. Unfortunately, the GE17 has put paid to that for the time being. It certainly seems highly doubtful that a Section 30 order would be granted by the Government during this Parliament.

    “As for last night’s HoC vote, it might have been a good night for the UK Government, but selling democracy down the river, allowing ‘Henry VIII’ clauses (well known democrat, he!!!) is something Parliament and the UK as a whole will, I suspect, come to regret.”

    The problem with that statement is that 19,000 laws and regulations were put into effect using “Henry VIII” powers under Section 2 of the EC 1972 Act. All without UK Parliamentary oversight.

    I do find the current bout of crocodile tears over their use amusing considering we are simply putting the same regs into British Law so the statute book functions correctly. Apparently, 45 years of their use was just fine, (“nothing to see here, move along please”) but using the same powers to ensure EU Law is given proper effect in UK law is now some heinous crime.

    All this palaver has also neatly shown up another of Clegg’s enormous pre-Referendum fibs namely that there were not that many EU laws and regulations that were imposed. 7% he said. I rather doubt there has been 270,000 UK laws and regs passed since 1972 to the 19,000 EU ones!

    @TOH Thanks – I try to keep up!

    @Hireton – I wonder what those percentages were like during the Troubles. I thought there was a higher percentage of people who favoured Irish unification than 22% to be frank.

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