Electoral Commission delivers findings on Independence Referendum issues

The Electoral Commission has delivered to the Scottish Government its findings on the question to be set in the October 2014 Independence Referendum and on the funding limits for the pro and anti campaigns in the leading up to that vote.

As widely predicted in the past few days, the Commission has found that the question submitted by the Scottish Government for the vote – ‘Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country?’ – could tend to lead a positive response.

It has therefore recommended – again as trailed – that the question should be the simple neutral: ‘Should Scotland be an independent country?’

It has also doubled the recommended cap to spending by each of the two campaigns from £750,000 to £1.5 million and is to cap the spending on campaigning on this issue by political parties – apparently treated as a separate matter.

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, is reported as having said that the Scottish Government would accept the Commissions recommendations.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • LinkedIn
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Ma.gnolia
  • NewsVine
  • StumbleUpon
  • SphereIt
  • Reddit
  • Slashdot
  • Print

21 Responses to Electoral Commission delivers findings on Independence Referendum issues

  1. The Electoral Commisions recomendation to replace ….” do you agree Scotland should be an independent counttry with ….” should Scotland be an independent country ” sounds very similar to me.

    Certainly suggests that the question that the Scottish government wanted to ask, but which question in it’s entirety Westminster initially wanted to deny the right to ask, was a fair question.

    Now with a legacy of the 60% rule, and that of multiple voting rights in Norther Ireland, let us hope that there are no shennanigans with bias in the BBC, Whitehall and funding imbalances as we move forward.

    An honest question and honest debate is what we are looking for as the question being asked now demonstrates.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • Willie you are quite right the question does sound similar however the question proposed by the SNP was a leading question and heavily weighted towards a YES vote. The revised question is an open question without any bias for a yes or a no vote.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. One of the recommendations of the Commission was that both sides spell out what a ‘No’ vote will mean for the country.

    The following exchange took place this morning in Westminster at Prime Ministers Questions:

    Angus Robertson (SNP)
    The Scottish Government has today accepted the welcome proposals from the Electoral Commission… amongst those recommendations is that the UK Government and Scottish Government should jointly agree to clarify the process that would follow the referendum in either outcome… will he give commitment that he will work with Scottish Government before the referendum?

    David Cameron
    We will not prenegotiate Scotland’s exit from the UK. It is his party that wants to break up the UK and it is for his party to make the case.

    Am I the only one who finds it ironic that the Unionist camp – having made such a fuss about the SNP following the Commission’s advice – is now itself refusing to do so?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. The Electoral Commision clear stated that they would not expect pre-negitiation, but that the governments could agree the PROCESS that would follow, i.e how negotiations would take place.

    Let me quote from the report.
    5.41 In the event of a ‘Yes’ vote, there would be a range of issues to be resolved within the UK and internationally about the terms of independence.
    Although we would not expect the terms of independence to be agreed
    between the two governments before the vote, clarity about how the terms of
    independence will be decided would help voters understand how the
    competing claims made by referendum campaigners before the referendum
    will be resolved.
    5.42 We recommend that the UK and Scottish Governments should
    clarify what process will follow the referendum in sufficient detail to
    inform people what will happen if most voters vote ‘Yes’ and what will
    happen if most voters vote ‘No’.
    5.43 We recommend that both Governments should agree a joint position, if
    possible, so that voters have access to agreed information about what would
    follow the referendum. The alternative – two different explanations – could
    cause confusion for voters rather than make things clearer.

    So what David Cameron said is not against what the Electoral Commission recommended.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. So what David Cameron said is not against what the Electoral Commission recommended.

    Time will tell how well the Unionists comply with the spirit of the EC’s recommendations.

    I am particularly interested in hearing their explanation of what will happen in the event of a ‘No’ vote.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • Because we were told we could vote NO and get a better deal. Now where have I heard that one before? Ah yes, it was in 1979. So we now wait to see what that “deal” is. Don’t hold your breath.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • I think Andy just by voting NO, by default we will get a better deal with nothinhg changing. None of the uncertainty, the years of squabbling, the unwanted changes and so on :)

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

          • eh !!! what about the YES/NO to the EU?
            I need to know why a referendum is taking so long —we need it now!!! (sorry that was from a previous email on Independence !!)

            Vote Yes and get rid of the uncertaintity of cuts, more cuts etc as well war and more wars –oh and Farage in full flight !!

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  5. David Cameron’s statement to the commons this morning very clearly sets out his position that,
    ” we will not prenegotiate Scotland’s exit from the UK”

    and that

    ” it is for his party (the snp) that wants to break up the UK and it is his for his party (the snp) to make the case”

    Seems clear enough to me that the level of discussion from Westminster will be less than zilch.

    Moreover Cameron even wanted to deny the Scottish people the right to a referendum and sadly it does seem that bad faith and recalcitrance will be the order of the day, as this statement, and indeed actions to date show.

    But as the Prime Minister of Lower Saxony said a couple of weeks ago that ” it is for the people of Scotland to decide” . And decide they will as they did before.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  6. Ah well Kat, biased, unbiased, or neutral everyone seeme happy with the wording.

    Now let us get on with discussing the merits or otherwise of independence or otherwise. And a pity some say, that the second question was not allowed.

    That will most certainly, in my view, have a significant bearing. And all the mutterings that something by way of extra powers might now be granted if folks say no, will to my mind, serve to further influence voting.

    The stall was set, the positions declared, and in the Conservatives case in particular, lines drawn in the sand. No more powers, end of story.

    Folks are generally happy with the Scottish Parliament, and they generally want more and the only choice for more, is Yes.

    So, we have the question, and now we choose.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Willy, tell me is this actually an official SNP slogan????

    “Now let us get on with discussing the merits or otherwise of independence or otherwise”

    I vote otherwise!!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • I agree, Gus. A lot of time and money could be wasted on plans and negotiations for something that is unlikely to happen. We need our Westminster politicians to focus all their time on the current UK problems and not the whimsical ideas of the SNP.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • That’s that settled then. No need for a referendum. Gus has decided the answer will be NO so it’s all settled. Democracy at its finest, Labour style.

      So what do we do about the EU? What’s Gus’s verdict on that? :-)

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

      • Now that we are having a referendum I am giving you my opinion on what the result will be. Democracy will prevail, and I think you will find Labour have taken part in more Democratic Elections than the SNP, correct me if I’m wrong.

        The EU, that’s an easy one! We stay in!

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


All the latest comments (including yours) straight to your mailbox, everyday! Click here to subscribe.