Joanna Cherry: Scotland on ‘highway’ to independence

The SNP MP was addressing the Wales Governance Centre 2020 annual conference.

Joanna Cherry: Scotland on ‘highway’ to independence Getty Images

Joanna Cherry QC has said Scotland is on a “highway” to independence and will leave the UK at the next “exit” as she pushed for her party to pursue a “Plan B”.

The SNP MP was addressing the Wales Governance Centre 2020 annual conference when she called for more investigation into legal arguments which could see Holyrood call another referendum without Westminster consent.

She cited a number of reasons including Brexit as to why support for independence appears to have grown since the 2014 vote.

Cherry said: “Scotland most certainly does not stand where she did.
“She is not so much at a crossroads, as on a highway to independence.
“A couple of exits have been missed but the indicator is now on and I’m confident Scotland will now take the next exit.”

She urged her party colleagues not to have faith in Boris Johnson allowing for a second independence referendum, painting Brexit as his catalyst for separatism.

And called for more efforts to be put into pursuing whether another ballot could be held without consent from Number 10 as it has never been tested in courts.

It comes after Nicola Sturgeon brought up the subject earlier this year but claimed energies must be focussed elsewhere.

Cherry said: “If those pro-independence and pro-independence referendum parties obtain a majority at the Scottish election next year and the Prime Minister refuses to come to the table to negotiate a second Edinburgh agreement the avenue – which the First Minister contemplated earlier this year – should be pursued and indeed must be pursued.

“When the inevitable legal challenge came, it would be for the courts to decide whether the bill passed would be within the competence of the Scottish Parliament and thus whether the referendum so authorised could proceed.”