It seems that the weight of public opinion and international opinion is pretty damning, Scotland if it leaves the UK will also lose EU membership.
The SNP position is that Scotland would after separation remain a member, sadly, law doesn’t work that way.
Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon articulate that since we have been EU citizens for 40 years that automatically continues.
But let us look at this scenario, if the UK leaves the EU; that would mean Scotland leaves the EU. The argument put forward by nationalists re 40 years of citizenship wouldn’t matter in law. This also means if Scotland leaves the UK, our membership automatically ceases to exist.
Alastair Darling, the Labour MP and Better together says it could takes years to sort out and with the president of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso saying one part of a member state, like the UK, became a separate country then it would have to apply to join the international club.
Rather than accepting the facts, Scotland’s unpopular Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon wants urgent talks, she will get nowhere, the EU will not open negations with SNP Ministers before Scotland became independent because it would be tampering with the internal matters of the UK.
And foreign policy is reserved to Westminster.
Nicola Sturgeon cannot deliver anything on this matter, it is wasted effort and quite frankly embarrassing, no means no.
Barroso comments are a huge blow to Alex Salmond who has repeatedly insisted Scotland would remain in the EU if it was independent. This latest debacle is one in a series of policy statements which people are now questioning seriously.
We can’t get in as an independent country unless we are independent first.
Mr Barroso rejected SNP claims that talks over Scotland’s terms of membership would take place from “within” the EU, arguing that legally it would be an entirely new state. So the Sturgeon position is nonsense, it is a dog and pony show, completely meaningless and devoid of substance.
We all know that a go-it-alone nation would have to negotiate its terms of entry from scratch.
That means several issues pop up like the euro, the Schengen free movement agreement, and Margaret Thatcher’s rebate.
We are not legally entitled to the rebate that is a deal between Westminster and the EU.
Conservative leader Ruth Davidson said:
“Alex Salmond’s assertions and attempts to hoodwink people have now been laid bare for all to see.”
Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday said the president’s intervention was “significant” and Mr Salmond could not “have his cake and eat it”.
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said SNP ministers did not agree with the president’s view and called for “early talks” with the commission.
What are they legally bound to talk about?
“We have always said that the specific terms of Scotland’s continued EU membership as an independent nation will be negotiated.”
I think people will remember the SNP position as Scotland will remain in the EU and negotiate terms from within.
What a climb down and backtracking from Nicola Sturgeon now.
Labour constitution spokeswoman Patricia Ferguson said:
“The consequences of having to reapply to join the EU and losing the UK opt-outs could mean an independent Scotland adopting the euro and having to set up border controls with England.”
When this issue popped up, the SNP was quick to claim that it was part of a “fabricated story”, now we see that this “fabricated story” is as solid as the Rock of Gibraltar. Rather than establishing facts, the SNP jumped the gun only to end up look like fools again.
As Alex Salmond famously said:
“My problem is that I have too many talented people and not enough Cabinet positions”.
A whole Cabinet and they can’t understand a contract!
It’s time to drop the charade and move on, this battle has been lost, continuing only makes the SNP Government seem more devious and untrustworthy in the eyes of the public, they have been told third party, in the eyes of the people, the proposition has been established.
We leave the UK; we aren’t EU members anymore and must re-apply from scratch.
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University