Home U.K Andrew Neil forensically breaks down looming Indy battle between Boris and Sturgeon

Andrew Neil forensically breaks down looming Indy battle between Boris and Sturgeon


The SNP leader is demanding another public vote on independence despite failing to secure a Scottish Parliament majority at last week’s election. She has claimed Boris Johnson would be “standing in direct opposition to the will of the Scottish people” if he tries to block another public vote.

However, Mr Neil, former BBC presenter and GB News chairman, argued the UK Government may not need to take any action.

Instead, he suggested Ms Sturgeon’s plan could be torpedoed by ordinary Scots taking legal action.

Whilst they lack a majority the SNP are expected to seek support from the pro-independence Greens in their bid for another referendum.

Another referendum bill is likely to be brought before the Scottish Parliament.

Mr Neil, originally from Paisley, said this could be blocked in the courts.

He tweeted: “The Government could sit on its hands while a private citizen takes ScotGov and Holyrood to the Court of Sessions in Edinburgh on the grounds they have acted beyond the law and their powers.

“Think of a Scottish Gina Miller, the wealthy woman who caused Brexiteers such anguish in the Supreme Court.

“A ‘Fiona McMiller’ could be even more devastating to SNP hopes of a 2nd referendum.

READ MORE: Sturgeon urged to resign after failing to secure SNP majority

Pro-UK parties won more votes overall than nationalist ones in the constituency vote for last week’s Scottish Parliament elections.

Mr Neil suggested a second legal manoeuvre, based on Section 29 of the 1998 Scotland Act, would allow a referendum to be blocked.

He said: “S29 says clearly that any Act of the ScotParl that is outside its competence ‘is not law’.

“So a 2nd ref Act without s30 approval would not be law.

“If Scot Gov instructed local authorities to proceed with a referendum, these authorities would be advised it would be illegal for them to do so.

“Of course ScotGov could take recalcitrant town councils to court. But it would almost certainly lose.

“In both cases, it would not be the Johnson government taking Sturgeon to court but Scottish citizens and officials.”

Scotland voted to remain part of the UK in 2014 by 55 percent of the vote to 45 percent.

Ahead of the vote, senior SNP figures said it would be a “once in a generation” decision.

On Thursday the SNP won the Airdrie and Shotts by-election, triggered by one of its MPs winning a Holyrood seat, but with a reduced majority.


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