Children’s Minister signals rethink on Queen as Head of State AFTER ‘Yes’ vote on independence

In what is becoming an increasingly fragmented independence proposition – although one clearly struggling for some kind of internal democracy – Children’s Minister, Aileen Campbell, has blown the whistle on a party deception.

There have been disputing factions in the partially conservative, partially socialist and partially republican SNP over First Minister, Alex Salmond’s single-handed appointment of the Queen as Head of of State of an independent Scotland, should the country vote ‘Yes’ in just over a year’s time, in September 2014.

While there has since been an internal row over her comments, leaving a chastened Ms Campbell trying to find a credible back-story to recast what she said on a young people’s television show last week, these were her words:

‘…for the country to move forward, a ‘Yes’ vote next year will allow us and enable us to take the decisions about how that country would look, how it would feel – and this includes deciding who would be Head of State.’

The fundamental damage Ms Campbell’s  intervention does to the ‘Yes Scotland’ campaign is less about a possible volte face on the status of the Queen in an independent Scotland – but that the modus operandi has been revealed as a readiness to renege on promises after a ‘Yes’ vote.

How can the electorate now be sure of anything that might or might not obtain post-18th September 2014?

The proposition is that you vote blind and decide what you voted for after the event. ‘Que?’, as Manuel in Fawlty Towers used to ask.

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Related Articles & Comments

  • It is one thing for Mr Salmond to ‘appoint’ the Queen as Head of an independent state, quite another to retain the monarchy in perpetuity. Perhaps Ms Campbell is talking about the Head of state after the Queen.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 7

    Spock August 11, 2013 4:33 pm Reply
  • It’s pretty silly to say “How can the electorate now be sure of anything that might or might not obtain post-18th September 2014?” Even were there not a referendum on independence, we couldn’t predict what a future government might do. Australia has been a monarchy since independence, but have considered changing that – it is one of the things an independent country can choose to do. Alex Salmond has said that Scotland will retain the monarchy for the time being; Aileen Campbell has said that this could change in the future. These statements are not in any way contradictory. The thing about having an independent country is that, in general, if most people want to change something, then it can be done. If most people would rather keep something the same, that’s what happens. I really don’t see what is so terrifying about the possibility that, at some point in the future, someone might suggest changing a decision made at the time of independence.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 27 Thumb down 13

    Arethosemyfeet August 11, 2013 5:02 pm Reply
    • I agree entirely with this post, absolutely correct Arethosemyfeet.
      The undemocratic situation we all so timidly accept in this union where voting and the existence of the monarchy are alien to each other will I hope cease to exist.
      Post a ‘Yes’ vote, whether we are for retaining the monarchy with a ‘Head of state’ or a republic, the wheels will finally be set in motion empowering the people of Scotland to exercise true democracy where we get what we vote for, not the faux democracy we are conditioned to think is normal let alone acceptable.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 9

      JnrTick August 11, 2013 11:25 pm Reply
  • Salmond was interviewed about the Royal Family on a programme a couple of years ago. From what I remember he said it could take up to ten years to sort out all the complexities of independence. Not altering the position of the Queen would just be one less thing to sort out. He made noises about what a good job she did but I did not see any enthusiasm and it probably meant for the rest of her lifetime.

    I suspect the senior SNP have been told to avoid commenting on it there is always someone wanting to get their name in the papers.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 6

    Lundavra August 11, 2013 8:11 pm Reply
  • Republic or monarchy – it’s a decision for the people which might perhaps be offered at some point in an independent Scotland. I can’t see it being offered to the UK as a whole.

    Perhaps a YES vote is a pro-choice vote. The more I read this site the more I feel the fence swaying.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 17 Thumb down 8

    Longshanks August 11, 2013 8:34 pm Reply
  • I don’t think there s any appetite to replace Elizabeth Saxe Coburg Gotha though her failure to make Paisley a City given she and the rest of the crown heads of Europe wouldn’t be here but for the skill of Paisley Abbey monks in delivering King Robert II by Caesarian section , was a big mistake.

    Its up to the Scots to decide their Head of State, just like Oz and the other countries on her demise.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 8

    Graeme McCormick August 11, 2013 10:15 pm Reply
  • Union of Crowns isn’t able to be dissolved in next year’s referendum, FM has zero powers to declare who is head of state & head of state isn’t even in line for any change until a still theoretical referendum some time in future.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 3

    Iain August 12, 2013 2:17 pm Reply
  • What exactly does For Argyll have against the citizens of an Independent Scotland deciding on whether or not to retain the monarchy?

    While you’re at it, what do you have against a politician expressing their personal view if it’s in disagreement with the party’s stance? It’s an obvious fallacy to pretend that every member of a political party agrees with every one of the party’s policies.

    I’d wager a bet that there are republicans inside all the main political parties represented in the Scottish Parliament.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 4

    Russell August 12, 2013 3:42 pm Reply
    • We have nothing at all against the citizens of an independent or a devolved Scotland deciding anything and, speaking personally, republicanism has always been attractive.
      The issue is the possibility of independence being sold to monarchists – or anyone else – on a false prospectus which would be reversed after a ‘Yes’ vote.
      We had hoped for an honest, fully informed debate and have been concerned that what has been delivered instead is the deployment of ‘smart dodges’.
      We cannot support the rceruitment for either side on this sort of thing. Both sides are guilty of this [and we are keeping a tally] but, so far, the greater deceptions and disguises have come from the SNP side of the Yes campaign. This has been a real disappointment – a disillusionment even – and, as a place for a new state to start from, in our book, this is not it.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 14

      newsroom August 12, 2013 4:09 pm Reply
      • what’s to be sold? … other than confirming nothing would change re: Queen as head of state

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

        Iain August 12, 2013 5:00 pm Reply
      • All I’ve seen from For Argyll so far is negative comment about the ‘YES’ campaign, and the headline here is a typically ‘dramatic’ example. Your bias is coming across loud and clear! So much for impartial, balanced reporting.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

        Irena August 16, 2013 11:43 am Reply
  • That’s complete nonsense and you know it.

    Both sides of the campaign have views of what a post referendum Scotland should look like.

    The Yes campaign obviously had Republicans on board. Look at the Green party. Of that’s a surprise to you then you’re woefully ill informed and have no business bring in journalism.

    Why not ask the No partners, Conservative, Labour and Liberals alike what sort of economic policies they want for Scotland. Ask them what future they see for the NHS. Ask them about the future of trades unions. Ask them about a multitude of things, any of which will be much more important than whether the head of state is appointed by a popular vote or by accident of birth, and you’ll get completely divergent answers.

    Yet you somehow have some sort of private score sheet. The only way it could be stacked against the SNP is if you’re refusing to ask tough questions of the other side.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 5

    Russell August 13, 2013 2:19 am Reply
    • refusing to ask tough questions of the other side

      I for one might be persuaded to give this site more credibility if I could see some ‘tough questions’ being asked of the ‘other side’.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 5

      Longshanks August 13, 2013 10:23 am Reply
  • When I used to shortlist and appoint staff the only thing I was interested in was “Have you done this kind of work before, and if so, how did you get on?

    The only person in the transition to independence with ANY previous experience in their role at all is the present Queen whose experience is unparalleled in history and never likely to be matched.

    The Queen of England is no use to us, but the Queen of Canada could be invaluable. She deployed a neat statutory instrument, bilingual in both the languages in which she is fluent. We might need that.

    I don’t think that she has any Gaelic, but the Duke of Rothesay might manage to buy a black pudding.

    This is no time to dispose of an experienced hand.

    The republicans are not even ready with a proposal for a head of state. I’d go for a shortlist of current and former PO’s of the Scottish Parliament on lifetime appointments to age 75.

    In UK as we have it now, what would we have got if we were a republic?

    Present Thatcher?

    President Blair?

    Till we are guaranteed that we will be spared that sort of thing, the hereditary method has more in its favour than it seems at first sight, and the head of state is trained from birth by well chosen people.

    We could contract it out to the private sector on a one year fun job for the mega rich. They would pay their own expenses and more. [Mugabe, Reagan, Trump, al Fayed]

    There are lots of worse ways than a hereditary ceremonial head of state.

    The idea that a change to a republic can be organised when the Queen dies is simply daft. Charles will be declared King within 24 hours.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

    John B Dick August 13, 2013 1:36 pm Reply
    • We’ve already got the newest royal named after a town in the backwoods of British Columbia, and it looks awfully likely that our next king will be named after a spaniel, so maybe there’s something to be said for declaring a republic. Anything France can do we can do better (and please, without the use of a guillotine).

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

      Robert Wakeham August 13, 2013 1:55 pm Reply
  • The question is whether the majority of voters do or do not want Scotland to be independent. It has been stated that the Queen will remain as head of state – FOR THE TIME BEING – following a ‘YES’ vote
    Everything I read, including ‘for Argyll’, seems completely biased towards the ‘NO’ vote and picking holes in the ‘YES’ campaign. Why don’t you journalists look at the holes in the ‘NO’ campaign? It’s like a fishing net!
    Nowhere have I read a reasonable, believable argument from them for staying in the UK. All I see is them slagging the other side…but why am I surprised since that is what the UK parties do best….not an original thought between them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 5

    Irena August 15, 2013 9:33 pm Reply
    • Well said Irena.

      Come on Newsroom, why not rise to the challenge here and cast your journalistic eye over some of those holes in the UKOK net?

      Who knows, perhaps you could help patch some of the more obvious rents?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 5

      Longshanks August 16, 2013 12:34 am Reply
    • “not an original thought between them.”
      YES they have, feathering their own nest.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

      John Sinclair August 16, 2013 12:07 pm Reply

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