Late post today, not because it hasn’t been an eventful but because I’ve a lot to cover.
Firstly the five candidates for the Conservative Party Leader have now declared:
- Theresa May,
- Michael Gove,
- Stephen Crabb,
- Andrea Leadsom and
- Liam Fox
I’m too busy screaming internally at this junction to list their “qualities.” We’ve got another 9 weeks of this competition to go through, so plenty of time.
Needless to say I think the UK has leapt out of the frying pan and into the fire. I despise Cameron, but at least with him being a political cushion (always left with the imprint of who ever last sat on him – can’t remember who said that but I love it) he varied in his attitudes, where as this lot have some very set views.
And the big shock of Golden Boy dropped out at the last-minute after being very successfully undermined by Gove at the weekend,who sub-edited that awful Telegraph column, then finished twisting the knife by standing himself with the comment, “Boris cannot provide the leadership or build the team for the task ahead.” Sarah Vine maybe now be known as Lady Macbeth, but Gove has shown some very Machiavellian qualities I think the other contenders need to watch him closely.
So for today at least the focus has been on the shambles of the Tory party rather than the absolute disgrace of Labour. Angela Eagle has postponed her declaration to stand against Corbyn, presumably because it would be overshadowed on the news cycle. The news that her leadership campaign website was registered last Saturday, 2 days before she resigned, shows how fake all this has been.
ANYWAY, I went out this evening – you know for a change – to have a break. And where did I go?
Well, Stewart McDonald MP ran a discussion evening titled “Brexit: What Happens Next?”
(Yes, I know – I need help. But to be fair, I can now report back to my local Women for Independence group next week. I’m not helping myself here, am I? )
Stewart stated right from the start that he doesn’t have all the answers and that so much depends on:
- who from the list above gets the Tory leadership.
- what the Scottish Government’s Standing Council on Europe recommend.
A lot of what he came out with wasn’t new to me, probably due to my Twitter / politics addiction but I am still very pleased I went. The bulk of the time was taken with statements and questions from the floor and I feel this two-way conversation was good, allowing Stewart to get an idea of how people felt and what their concerns were rather than just him briefing us.
He was, as always, very reassuring. The political landscape maybe in turmoil, but I feel that our (SNP) elected representatives at least have a plan with alternative options. There’s no denying that an iScotland is their ultimate aim, but it has to be when the time is right and that is when the majority of the Scottish people want it. (civic vnationalism here by the way – you live here you get a vote, as does any 16/17 year olds)
These are the main points /queries raised, these weren’t asked in any particular order so I’ve attempted to group them. Comments are from floor as well as Stewart.
(And apologies for briefness, I never learnt shorthand.)
- Glasgow South voted 73% Remain (highest number of voters in Glasgow)
- Admiration around the room for Nicola Sturgeon’s actions since last Friday.
- Quick general election unlikely due to turmoil in 2 main parties, plus would require either:
- repeal of Fixed Term Act, or
- Tories to put forward motion of no-confidence in themselves.
- Police Scotland contacted and as yet no rise in hate crime since the referendum result.
EU referendum / campaign / Brexit
- How binding is referendum result?
- decision left for next Prime Minister.
- MPs asked for consent to go ahead.
- MPs asked to repeal.
- renegotiation of terms.
- decision left for next Prime Minister.
- Concern over loss of EU citizenship – people don’t want to go back to WM being arbitrator of rights,
- Joanna Cherry QC MP has already stated that Scottish Parliament will not give consent to human rights being undermined by WM.
- Condemnation of terms used during campaign re immigration,
- And the use of the term “hostage” by UKIP’s Lord Pearson with regard to negotiations.
- SNP MPs to write to all EU nationals within their constituencies to reassure them that they will be supported as much as possible. (Some Labour MPs to do the same.)
- PM has made commitment that all areas of UK will be involved in Brexit negotiations.
- Scottish representatives will probably be chosen by FM.
- ScotGov’s own Standing Council on Europe has a wide range of experts.
- Not enough “good” information was given out, too much spin.
- Issues such as Good Friday agreement was ignored.
- There is a need for politicians to be accountable if they lie during campaigning.
- General discussion over why Scotland had a greater level of EU support.
- less disenfranchised population.
- higher level of engagement with elected representatives (at all levels.)
- protection from austerity.
- A lot of anecdotal reports of No voters in 2014 referendum saying they want iScotland if we are taken out of Europe.
- Need to push rights of the citizen as well as business case in any future referendum
- What is process for Scotland to join EU?
- Depends on timetable if/when IndyRef takes place – before or after Brexit.
- Scotland is an oil producer & has rich fish stocks, likely to be welcomed by Europe (including Spain)
- Could Scotland be successor state if/when England & Wales left EU.
- currently followi ng all EU laws & regulations.
What happens if WM tries to block or use civil service against a second referendum?
- SNP now 3rd party, has more rights and can ask for independent reports
I hope this makes some sense. It did at the time.
And finally, yes Stewart did describe himself as the SNP Boris Johnson but with tongue firmly in cheek.