Chris McCorkindale and Aileen McHarg: Constitutional Pathways to a Second Scottish Independence Referendum

UK Constitutional Law Association

The Scottish Government’s Case for a Second Independence Referendum

On 19 December 2019 – a week after the Westminster General Election at which the SNP, again, won an overwhelming majority of Scottish seats – the Scottish Government published its long-awaited case for a second independence referendum: Scotland’s Right to Choose: Putting Scotland’s Future in Scotland’s Hands

The document does three main things, aimed at four distinct audiences. First, the bulk of the discussion is devoted to setting out the democratic case for holding a second referendum by the end of 2020. This is based on three claims: that the people of Scotland, as members of a multi-national Union based on consent, have the sovereign right to determine their own constitutional future; that there has been a material change in circumstances since the 2014 referendum; and that the Scottish Government has a mandate to hold a referendum. The material change…

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