In his victory speech, Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon said his Scottish National Party (SNP) – which wants to leave the United Kingdom – won 64 seats in the Scottish Parliament, giving it a “historic and extraordinary” victory. A short of the majority.
Along with the eight seats won by the Scottish Greens, the pro-independence parties now control 72 of the 129 seats in parliament. The Conservative Party won 31 seats, the Labor Party 22 and the Liberal Democrats four.
Sturgeon said he would like to hear a second referendum on whether his party should end the 300-year-old union with the UK, despite his priority being to “lead Scotland to epidemic and keep people safe”.
Sturgeon warned that “any Westminster politician who tries to stand in the way of the referendum is not fighting with the SNP, you are fighting with the democratic will of the Scottish people.”
These comments are centered on the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, who wants permission to hold a referendum in Scotland. He has so far rejected a second referendum, in which the 2014 referendum – in which Scots voted to remain in the United Kingdom – is a generational event.
“I think a referendum is irresponsible and irresponsible in the current context,” Johnson told the Daily Telegraph on Friday.
One of Johnson’s senior cabinet ministers repeatedly responded on Sunday to questions about how the government would handle the second referendum.
When asked by Sky News if the government would go to the Supreme Court if the Scottish Parliament passed a bill to hold a referendum, Cabinet Office Minister Michael Covey said, “We are not going to go there.”
Johnson invited Sturgeon to attend the Govt Recovery Summit across the UK, and in a letter said the UK “served very well when we worked together”.
“We all have our own perspectives and ideas – we will not always agree – but I hope that by learning from each other, we can better recreate the interests of the people we serve,” Johnson wrote.
With 62% of people in Scotland voting to stay in the EU, the chances of a second independent referendum after the 2016 Brexit referendum are on the cards.
Speaking on the BBC’s “The Andrew Mar Show” on Sunday, Sturgeon reiterated that voter support for his party – which demanded a fourth consecutive victory – had given him a clear mandate to continue voting.
“In this election they voted overwhelmingly for the SNP, and we were convinced in a statement at first … in a referendum to continue the country through the Govt epidemic, but to give the Scottish people a chance to choose our own future after the crisis,” he said.
“We are sitting here, having a debate about whether that decision will be respected or not. It says a lot about the lack of respect for Scottish democracy. This UK government has been proving it for some time now.”