Scotland, you know that green place full of craggy hills and constant rain that lies due north of England?
If you’ve ever seen Braveheart, you might know a little bit about William Wallace, The Bruce and the battles they fought for freedom. Oh wait, you’re an Outlander Fan? Well then you must know about the rebel Jacabites and their crushed uprising against the English. Even if you’re just a news buff, you might have heard about the 2014 Scottish Referendum, which gave anyone living in Scotland over the age of 16 the right to vote for independence from the United Kingdom. As we can see, the Scots kind of like the idea of freedom.
Despite voting “No” in 2014, the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, announced this morning that she will move forward with a second independence referendum. According to the BBC, Sturgeon “said she would ask the Scottish Parliament next week to request a Section 30 order from [the UK’s Parliament].” This would allow for a second vote to occur.
The major factor in bringing forth this second referendum was the Brexit vote to leave the European Union. Despite Scotland’s 62% majority vote to remain, the UK voted to leave by a very slim majority. What does this change for the referendum vote? Previously, many Scots voted no because of the questions surrounding an independent Scotland remaining a member of the EU.
Now that the rest of the UK (baring Northern Ireland) voted to leave the EU, Sturgeon has been meeting with members of the EU Parliament to discuss options for Scotland to remain a member state or part of the European free market. However, in the wake of this announcement, the EU responded stating an independent Scotland will still have to apply for membership
Will the Scots get their long awaited freedom? Should Sturgeon’s request be granted, we will have to wait until late 2018 or early spring 2019 for the vote to occur. You can watch the announcement here.