The UK General Election will take place on 8th June 2017.  The main political parties have now published their Party Manifestos in a bid to win voters.  The parties’ stances on a second Referendum on Scottish Independence are as follows:-

 

Conservative Party

 The Conservatives oppose a Second Referendum at this time. They believe that, in order for any Referendum to be fair, legal and decisive, it cannot take place until the Brexit process has completed.

 

Key manifesto points are:

 

  • The Conservatives do not believe there should be a Second Referendum unless there is “public consent” for it to happen.
  • They believe Scotland’s economic growth has lagged behind the rest of the UK in recent years, but that the Scottish Government has the tools to drive economic growth in Scotland.
  • The Conservatives propose setting up a UK Shared Prosperity Fund, using the structural fund money that will come back to the UK following Brexit, designed to reduce inequalities between communities across the four nations.  They will consult widely on the design of the fund with the devolved administrations, local authorities, businesses and public bodies.

 

Scottish Green Party

 The Scottish Greens are in favour of a Second Referendum and would campaign for Scottish independence from the UK. Until then, they want to build a “bolder democracy”, and open up institutions for greater citizen participation while pushing for stronger powers for Holyrood.

 

Key manifesto points are:

 

  • The Scottish Greens believe that the result of the 2014 referendum on Scottish independence and Scotland’s 2016 vote to stay in the EU are now incompatible.
  • Voters in Scotland should be given the choice in a referendum between what the Greens consider will be a “hard-Brexit UK” and an independent Scotland free to re-join the EU.
  • In the meantime, they propose the creation of a radically democratic written constitution, produced by the Scottish people in a citizen-led process.
  • More powers should be devolved to local councils.
  • Scotland should “fulfil the promise of Holyrood” by creating a more accessible ‘People’s Parliament’ which has more of the powers which the Greens consider it needs to serve the Scottish public.

 

Labour Party

 The Labour Party opposes a Second Referendum, as they believe that it is unwanted and unnecessary. They hope that increased funding for Scotland will boost the economy and erase the attitude that there is a need for independence.

 

Key manifesto points are:

 

  • Labour will “campaign tirelessly” to ensure Scotland remains a part of the UK.
  • Independence would lead to turbo-charged austerity for Scottish families.
  • The Scottish Parliament will receive a large funding increase from Labour policies.
  • A Scottish Investment Bank will be established, with £20 billion available to local projects and small business in Scotland, creating work and stimulating the economy.

 

Liberal Democrats

 The Liberal Democrats oppose a Second Referendum.  They also consider that the UK should remain in the EU.

 

Key manifesto points are:

 

  • Scotland benefits from being in the UK and EU single markets as each is worth billions of pounds and supports tens of thousands of Scottish jobs.
  • Keeping the UK in the EU will remove the basis for a proposed Second Referendum.
  • There should be an agreed package of powers to deliver an empowered and accountable Scottish Parliament in a strong UK.

 

Scottish National Party

 The Scottish National Party (SNP) is in favour of a Second Referendum. The SNP acknowledges that, while this election will not decide whether or not Scotland will be independent, it will reinforce the Scottish Parliament’s right to decide when an independence referendum should happen.

 

Key manifesto points are:

 

  • Brexit must not simply be “imposed on Scotland”. At the end of the Brexit process, when the final terms of the deal are known, Scotland should have “a real choice about its future”.
  • The Scottish Parliament should be able to determine the timescale for a Second Referendum.
  • The SNP are to set out the process by which Scotland’s membership of the EU will be secured whether or not Scotland has already left the EU as part of the UK.
  • Should the SNP win a majority of Scottish seats, they believe any continued attempts to block a Second Referendum would be democratically unsustainable.

 

The United Kingdom Independence Party

 UKIP Scotland’s manifesto explains that UKIP “remains a Unionist party which understands the benefits of local decision making”, and “completely opposes the idea” of a Second Referendum.