by Stephen Tall on April 26, 2014
Lib Dem Voice has polled our members-only forum to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. Some 830 party members responded – thank you – and we’re publishing the full results.
Two-thirds of Lib Dem members opposed to Scottish independence
Do you support or oppose Scotland becoming a country independent from the rest of the United Kingdom?
11% – Support independence
23% – Neither support nor oppose
64% – Oppose independence
1% – Don’t know
A convincing majority of Lib Dem members (64%) oppose Scotland becoming an independent country – little more than 1-in-10 support it. However almost one-quarter remain neutral, almost all of them no-Scots’ Lib Dems who reckon it’s not really any of our business. Here’s a sample of your comments…
• I would like to see English Independence!
• A devolution of power political to power from Westminster to Holyrood is certainly desirable whether it is through Independence, or I would hope, a federalization of the UK.
• We need Home Rule agreed by the three Better Together parties, and we need that agreement now.
• I am a federalist
• It’s up to the people of Scotland to decide.
• I nominally oppose independence but would support the right of Scots to self-govern if that’s how they decide to vote.
• Amazing how the “No” campaign has managed to turn all the positives of union into negatives – we share a currency yay into you can’t share boo, we all enjoy the bbc yay, into you can’t have dr who boo. and so on
• We are Better Together. In Britain, in Europe, in work.
• It is time for the distinctively different political culture of Scotland to split from the rest of the UK and find its destiny in Europe.
• English. Don’t have a horse in the race and being honest? Don’t really care…
• Culturally I feel British rather than English. The UK is greater than the sum of its parts.
• I don’t want an almost permanent Tory Government in the rest of the UK
• If the Scots wish to become Independent then thats their choice, we should be support their rights for self determination. I would prefer that they remain part of the UK with additional devolved powers (for all regions of the UK not just the individual countries)
• Better maintaining the statis quo with greater negotiated autonomy.
• It’s for them to decide. I’d like them to stay, but if they don’t want to, then that’s fine.
• As a Lib Dem I support subsidiarity.
• We are stronger as one country.
• I would vote for independence if Scottish. But very damaging for the rest of us.
• Personally think it is a wrong move but of course I accept that the Scottish people have the right to make the decision themselves.
3-in-5 Lib Dems back ruling out currency union if Scotland becomes independent
Do you support the decision by George Osborne, Danny Alexander and Ed Balls to jointly rule out a currency union if Scotland chooses independence?
59% – Yes
29% – No
6% – Neither
5% – Don’t know
Three-fifths of Lib Dems agree with the decision of the Lib Dems, Conservatives and Labour to join forces in ruling out a currency union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK. However, a significant minority (29%) reckon that was the wrong decision – with many pointing out that there may be nothing they can do to stop an independent Scotland using the pound if it chooses. Here’s a sample of your comments…
• It’s silly bullying, and counter-productive. Of course we could share a currency
• There is no reason to prevent this, however it should be clear that the UK would expect to predominate in decisions about the currency and that it would not be an equal partnership.
• It should not be for George, Danny and Ed to rule this in or out. Entering a currency union should be a decision for the electorate of all parts of the United Kingdom. It would be inconsistent to have a referendum of ceding powers to Europe and not apply the same standards to Scotland.
• If Scotland wants to be independent it should develop its own currency.
• The Pound is a reserve currency (just), and as such any one can use it if they so desire.
• It is as much Scotland’s currency as England’s. The fact that the controlling bank is located in London is just bad luck for the Scots. I do not want to exchange currencies at the border.
• It is important to have as much in common as possible. The same should go for defense cooperation. Every effort between now and the referendum should send the message we love you.
• I trust Danny Alexander.
• I think it’s silly grandstanding.
• Makes economic sense
• Alex Salmond cannot assume things which he doesn’t have the power to give. I don’t want him deciding on the pound, he can go and whistle.
• The whole status of the UK would change so that the currency would no longer just belong to the remaining parts of the UK
• English politicans must not again leave England in a position where Scottish politicians can use English taxpayers money to bail out corrupt and bankrupt Scottish businesses.
• If they want to be really independent then they need their own currency
• I do not know how it would work, and if the SNP really understand what they are asking for.
• It’s nonsense economically and is a bullying tactic politically
Photo of Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland by Eusebius@Commons
* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, and editor of the 2013 publication, The Coalition and Beyond: Liberal Reforms for the Decade Ahead. He is also a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum and writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.