Thursday’s referendum showed a relatively solid majority of British voters in favor of withdrawing from the European Union, and that’s all anyone has been talking about since. But will it ever actually happen? That’s not as clear.
The referendum itself is “not binding,” which has some anti-Brexit MPs suggesting they can just ignore the vote entirely and keep the status quo in place, like it never happened. That might be a tall order with pro-Brexit Boris Johnson likely to be the next prime minister, but even he says he’s in no hurry to actually start the process.
Even if he does, and even if a British parliament that is strongly anti-Brexit acquiesces and passes legislation supportive of the referendum’s wishes, the coast is far from clear, as the Scottish Parliament would also be allowed to “veto” any such legislation if they felt it was in their national interest to do so.
Which they do. Scotland overwhelmingly voted in favor of remaining in the EU, and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon affirmed that the Scottish parliament would strongly consider withholding legislative consent from the Brexit.
Scotland just had a vote on secession from the United Kingdom back in 2014, which failed, and polls show an overwhelming majority in favor of secession now, driven by a desire to remain in the EU, with or without England.
While a lot of British officials are sweating the possibility of losing Scotland, Northern Ireland, or both as part of the Brexit, that might be the only way a Brexit is able to happen, because the ability of the national parliaments of Scotland and Northern Ireland to “withhold consent” and effectively block any legislation poses a major obstacle to any Brexit legislation.
That might be a relief to the anti-Brexit MPs, giving them a bit of political cover to ignore the referendum. Holding what has been the most newsworthy referendum in a generation and then ignoring the result, however, could itself fuel considerable anger within the UK.
20 thoughts on “Scottish Parliament, Others Could Put Brakes on Brexit”
No because the power to make treaties is kept in the UK parliament in London as the Scottish Parliament can’t make law that affects other juristictions
The EU allows the upper half of society to hoard so much of the land and wealth that total rebellion is on the verge. That is why the rich and the laboring-class voted together in support of Brexit.
Maybe England would be happier just being England again. Let the Scots, Ulster Irish and Welsh go their own way and turn their countries into Bollox Central — NI could easily be absorbed by the Irish Euro State. Poor little Wales really won’t be able to do anything without England –so they may just as well suck it up.
May 29, 2016 BREXIT End the EU, a CIA Covert Operation
Remain” or “Leave”? What does the UK’s EU Referendum—scheduled 23rd June—really amount to? Is it simply the opportunity for UK citizens to decide if Britain should stay in the European Union? Or is it something of greater significance, with broader and more serious implications? And just what is this thing called the EU anyway?
Feb 26, 2016 OUT! – David Icke Talks Brexit
This Is The Brexit Information David Cameron Doesn’t Want You To Hear.
British politicians are worried about losing Scotland, but not Northern Ireland. For decades now the English have wished to rid themselves of the problem of Northern Ireland, hoping the North would vote to separate from the UK and unite with Eire. But only the hard left are able to say so, the mainstream are afraid of sounding unpatriotic.
Brexit is an absolute disaster though. Britain’s economy is joined at the hip with continental Europe, and the political ramifications are also huge. The EU has been the most successful peace making project in human history – Europe used to be the most violent continent in the world, it became the most peaceful.
Except peace had mostly to do with the (now dissolving) memories of WW2, where Europe finally turned its full force against itself, instead of the colonies; along with the existence of the USSR which defeated Nazism (not the West and not the USA) and the strength it enabled in the Left. It had nothing whatsoever to do with the EU.
The EU did not start off rich. Europe was in ruins after WW2, with the 1948 Congress of Europe essentially and meeting of impoverished, developing societies. The memory of WW1 did not prevent WW2, the memory of the Franco Prussian War did not prevent WW1. It was the functional cooperation for the common good that took place in the ECSC, the EC, and the EU that made the difference.
The more common argument to the one you are making is that NATO created peace in Europe. This is of course rubbish – NATO may have discouraged the Russians from invading, but it never had any capacity to stop Europeans fighting each other. When the USA put soldiers in Lebanon, a couple of truck bombs sent them fleeing the country. US troops didn’t pacify Vietnam, they didn’t pacify Afghanistan, they can’t pacify Iraq. It is the EU that make Europe peaceful enough for US soldiers to keep their bases here since WW2. If Europe was not peaceful, the US troops would have run away long ago.
Of course not. But it did start off with access to imperial (ie. other people’s) wealth.
And it rebuilt itself from imperial resources robbed from all over the world, and it subordinated itself to American leadership of the empire.
I never said it was only the memory of WW2, although it is an extremely important factor.
WW2 was about a few newcomers (Germany and allies, including my idiot country, Hungary) wanting “in” on the Western empire (and of course Russia). Pretty similar to WWI. But the damage it caused to Europe itself was unprecedented.
The EU has increased, at very, very high cost to the rest of the world, with American help, the standard of living of much of its working class (except where it helped fascist dictators like in Spain or Greece) in order to counter the (ideological) threat of the USSR. Both the necessity (the USSR doesn’t exist any more) and the resources needed to maintain this situation are gone.
I’ll ignore your last paragraph simply because I *never made this point*, except for this nonsense:
Except of course the “Russians” never invaded or really wanted to invade. The Westerners did on the other hand have a plan to invade Russia – in a potential alliance with leftover German troops (Operation Unthinkable iirc).
Furthermore, you probably know about the American support for fundamentalist terrorism within Afghanistan long before the Soviet invasion – and that this was what provoked it in a large part. Europe had nothing against it.
If you actually look at news, you’ll see what the central EU countries are talking about now: strengthening the police and military forces of the EU.
Furthermore, and more generally: how can anyone just erase from their memory the murderous imperialist history of Europe just because of 60 years of internal peace, maintained for the first 40 years in no small part through the “fear” of the USSR, while *still* living off the exploitation and robbery of the rest of the world? How can you forget its dependence on African and Middle Eastern resources? The support for fascism in Spain and Greece? The complete forgetting in Belgium of the source of Belgian wealth (to the extent that mass murdering (at least 8 million people) Leopold II got a commemorative 12.5 Euro coin and has streets named after him)?
The EU, despite its pretensions, is the towering monument of European supremacism and racist self-indulgence. It *cannot* exist except as “Fortress Europe”, an isolated imperial centre, more and more stratified economically, living off the rest of the world (and partly its own periphery of course).
Most of the world has an imperialist past, the important thing is to try to move forward the right way. The history of racism in European empires is awful, but if you look at the modern brexit debate, the racism is wholly and exclusively in the anti EU camp.
That’s not an accident. That is a clear result of the link between nationalist/nativist ideology and xenophobia.
The source of EU prosperity can’t have just been exploiting colonies, since the EU country that grew fastest and became the most productive was that of Germany, which didn’t have any colonies.
The economic benefits of the EU are those of having a large market with a well trained, well educated labour force, unified through a customs union, with common regulatory standards and mutual recognition of institutions and qualifications. This allows investors to take a long term view in the knowledge that the states are secure and peaceful, with high levels of welfare keeping the populations happy and healthy.
At least that was the case till the brexitters messed it up.
Which absolutely isn’t what Europe is doing now. And I don’t think hiding and forgetting the past and even repeating it (look at European involvement in the crime against Libya or German rearmament now etc) is the “right way”.
Actually, both sides are anti-immigrant and fundamentally racist, although of course the liberal side is much more refined about it. Western imperialism, of which Europe benefits, is what’s behind the “immigration” (actually refugee – even the name is a lie) wave here, but neither side is willing to discuss it.
Racism (with other forms of supremacism) is actually a constantly developing imperial ideology, NOT independent of imperialism at all, but something that MUST always develop to rationalise why we white Europeans are allowed to rob “lesser” people blind and murder them en masse. It has a long history, always intertwined with empire.
In fact, I’d claim that the xenophobe white Brits, who have no consciousness about
Except much of the actual left is also anti-EU for good reasons. Also, xenophobia and nationalism are not the root causes of these processes but the *effects* of degrading economic conditions. You absolutely *cannot* oversimplify the anti-EU sentiment to this.
That’s…not how it works at all. It goes through foreign ownership and control over national resources, limiting competition on the higher levels of the “value chain” but maintaining almost “perfect competition” in natural resource markets and the (global) labour market and of course financial shenanigans. That an American worker who pours coffee in a Starbucks earns quite a bit more than the person who grows the coffee is one effect of imperialism, one form of imperial exploitation. And the kid working for Starbucks isn’t exactly on the top of the pyramid, to say the least. He’s also in the oppressed working class, only in the imperial centre, where they get bigger crumbs. That Germany is becoming cleaner while China is becoming more polluted is also a form of imperialism.
A large unified market with a well trained workforce was what the EU gained from the death of the USSR – and living in Hungary, I know perfectly well what this means for my own country and how we are being impoverished by this.
Don’t look down on people. Never, never ever think that they don’t know their own interests or that they chose something because they’re completely stupid.
And please do not misunderstand Europe. It’s not what you think it is.
The choice is simple. The cost for England’s freedom is freeing what remains of the British Empire. Let Scotland and Ireland go. They’ll discover in there own time that the EU is a trap and you never had any right them to begin with. The only way to kill the EU is to kill the UK. I say pull the plug.
“let Scotland and Ireland go”. The Scottish people voted 55% to 45% to stay in the United Kingdom. The Scottish economy is dependent on the UK economy much more than on the EU economy. Scotland will stay in the UK.
The Republic of Ireland is already ‘free’. The majority population in Northern Ireland is strongly unionist and will stay in the UK. I have suggested in a previous comment a solution to the Irish problem created by Brexit.
The Scottish vote was bullsh*t and everyone knows it. Those people were threatened into voting against independence. They were victims of a fear campaign but that’s besides the point. Scotland is stolen property, pure and simple. It will NEVER belong to the UK. Never.
As for Ireland, it ceases to be truly free as long as British boots pollute the soil. Your unionists are about as Irish as European Zionist settlers are Palestinian. There on Irish soil, if they can’t commit to a free, independent and unified Ireland then they have no right to call themselves Irish.
I agree that Ireland should leave the EU (along with everybody else.) But suggesting that they should rejoin the UK in any form is grossly disrespectful to the millions who died, over centuries of apartheid, to make Ireland free.
Scotland was not stolen. The Union of 1707 was agreed by both parties.
Under the Good Friday Agreement of 1998, the Republic of Ireland removed from its constitution its claim to the six counties of Ulster. The people of Northern Ireland were given the right to hold British or Irish citizenship, or both. If a majority of the people of Northern Ireland and of the Republic of Ireland vote for a unified Ireland, the British and Irish governments have an obligation to implement it. The conflict is over.
I did not suggest that Ireland joined the UK. I suggested a confederation between the two states – that is, a treaty specifying the nature of their future relationship. By the way, your comparison with the Palestine/Israel situation is apt: a confederation between Israel and Palestine could be the solution there (see a recent article by Uri Avnery which has appeared on Antiwar.com and other places recently).
1707 and 1998 were not democratic decisions. They were cowardly acts by sell-outs and Quislings like Gerry Adams. They were decisions that were about as democratic as the decision by the UK to join the EU. The conflict isn’t over until justice is served.
A single-state solution for Israel/Palestine makes sense because historically Palestine always was a single state until the premise of modern-day Israel was invented by the Zionists. Ireland is Ireland. Scotland is Scotland. And the Crown can expect nothing but turmoil until they recognize these facts.
“Ireland is Ireland. Scotland is Scotland. And the Crown can expect nothing but turmoil until they recognize these facts”.
There is no turmoil, except in your head.
The turmoil exists in the hearts of the Scots and Irish who are now crying out for there own referendums. As well as members of the Irish diaspora, such as myself, separated from our motherland by decades of famine, imperialism and apartheid.
As for Israel/Palestine, Israels very national identity is based in racial supremacism and colonialism. Most of the territory they now hold is stolen. The only single state solution that makes moral sense is a single secular state with full right of return for the robbed. If the Zionists resist this then Palestine has know choice but to defend itself and any just nation or individual should support them in doing so.
“The Scots and Irish are now crying out for their own referendums.”
The SNP have said that the idea of a second referendum is “on the table”. Shinn Fein has “raised the possibility” of a referendum on the re-unification of Ireland. Not exactly “crying out for”.
“As for Israel/Palestine, Israels very national identity is based in racial supremacism and colonialism. Most of the territory they now hold is stolen. The only single state solution that makes moral sense is a single secular state with full right of return for the robbed”.
I agree entirely, except for the two words “most” and “secular”. If you would like to discuss this further, please do so on my website.
Nobody complained when the government of Greece, under enormous pressure from the US and the EU, ignored their very definitive referendum, which directed their government to refuse the EU-imposed austerity plan.
Besides, the Leave side is most strongly supported by geriatrics. If there’s a storm of protest in the streets they can get out there and throw their walkers.
I usually admire Jason Ditz’s articles, but on this he has seriously misunderstood the situation.
“Thursday’s referendum showed a relatively solid majority of British voters in favor of withdrawing from the European Union”. The referendum was passed by 52% to 48% of votes cast. This is not a ‘solid’ majority. Even minor events could have produced a swing of 2% from one side to the other. Many people believe that there would have been a different result if the Labour Party had campaigned more effectively for Remain among its core supporters. It is normal practice for votes on constitutional changes to require a supermajority of two thirds, or at least 60%. It is the foolishness of Prime Minister in calling for a referendum on the basis of a simple majority that has resulted in the present disastrous situation.
Nevertheless politicians on all sides have said they respect the result of the referendum. It would be political suicide for any MP to vote against its implementation. Britain is going to leave the EU.
Scotland is not an independent sovereignty: all the powers of the Scottish Parliament are devolved from Westminster. The Scottish Parliament does not have veto power over British exit from the EU. To join the EU Scotland would need to first obtain independence from the UK, and then satisfy the conditions for accession to the EU, a process that usually takes many years. Scotland is economically dependent upon the UK. It could not survive if it was outside both the EU and the UK.
Ireland, not Scotland, is the biggest problem for Brexit. Northern Ireland voted Remain, but does not want independence. At present, the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is a completely open one. Also, many Northern Ireland residents (and residents of the Republic?) have dual Irish/British nationality. On British exit from the EU, that border would become a border between the EU and Britain. How could the EU control immigration into the EU while such an open border exists? How could Irish nationalism accept the closure of that border? The only solution I can see is for Ireland to leave the EU and form a confederation with the UK.
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