Sturgeon unveils new paper on independence
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has unveiled the second in a series of papers outlining her government’s case for Scottish independence.
At Bute House, Edinburgh, Sturgeon published a paper titled ‘Renewing Democracy through Independence’, which outlines her government’s belief that Scotland was not able to decide on Brexit on its own, and how subsequent Westminster governments have been installed despite not being voted for by Scotland.
The First Minister told the press conference the paper “shows that, far from being abstract, this inbuilt deficit has real life consequences for individuals, families and businesses across Scotland - from the impact of austerity to the implications of a Brexit we did not vote for.”
Sturgeon added: “This discussion could not be more timely or urgent. The democratic deficit Scotland faces is not a recent phenomenon - it has been there throughout devolution - but the evidence of it now is starker than ever.
“The fact is independence is not just the best route to renewing and securing democracy in Scotland - which is, in turn, so essential to building the economic and social future we want, independence is the only credible route.”
The First Minister was asked whether it was fair for her opponents to question her commitment to democracy given she appears to not accept the outcome of the 2014 referendum or the 2016 Brexit vote.
Sturgeon replied: “No, it’s not fair, and neither of the assertions you’ve put to me there are true.
“The outcome of the 2014 referendum was accepted, and the evidence of that is that Scotland is not independent. The outcome of the Brexit vote in Scotland was that Scotland voted to remain in the EU, and that has not been honoured by UK parties and governments because Scotland is out of the EU.
“My stance has been that the outcome of that referendum should be honoured because Scotland should have remained within the EU.”
Responding to the First Minister’s statement. Scottish Labour’s deputy leader Jackie Baillie said: “So far the SNP’s case for independence amounts to a cocktail of wishful thinking and fearmongering.
“Bills are soaring, NHS waiting lists are spiralling and trains are barely running – but Scotland has two governments ignoring these issues to stoke division, play political games, and make impossible promises.”