Scotland leader ready for independence vote

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I admire the First Minister for her zeal, but I can not help think she would do better to bring all her energy to bear on delivering good public services for the Scottish people, and properly take up the devolved powers already at her disposal.

Despite her refusal to openly rule it out, Sturgeon's aides insisted afterwards she had no plans to stage a so-called indicative, unofficial referendum. She said it would be a "democratic outrage" for the British government to stop the people of Scotland "having a choice over their future".

Speaking on Tuesday, the Scottish government's Brexit minister, Michael Russell, said there would be "absolute clarity" on its position on European Union membership by the time of any second referendum, asking for "patience" in the meantime.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson said Nicola Sturgeon's demand for a vote by the spring of 2019 would be rejected "conclusively".

She is set to trigger two years of negotiations over Brexit this.

Mr Brown was the main architect of the "Vow", a promise of more powers for Holyrood, which many believe boosted the No vote ahead of the Scottish independence referendum in September 2014.

On Thursday, May said that people should first learn the results of the Brexit talks before asking for another referendum, stressing that it was not the right time for such a vote to be held.

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The kind of people, they believe, who are committed to the United Kingdom or who simply don't want another independence referendum.

The prime minister added: "I think we should be working to get the right deal for Scotland and the United Kingdom with our future partnership with the European Union". But Sturgeon was elected past year on a manifesto which included the possibility of a new independence vote if there were a material change in circumstances "such as Scotland being taken out of the European Union against our will".

If May didn't already have a headache over the Scottish "issue", she'll certainly have a whopper of one after Robertson's speech. At that point a fair, legal, agreed referendum - on a timescale that will allow the people of Scotland an informed choice - ceases to be just my proposal, or that of the SNP. The only other way the reserved matters in the Scotland Act can be amended would be through an Act of the UK Parliament.

I obviously welcome these commitments from the government, but it is clear that nationalists, of whatever stripe, both in Scotland and Northern Ireland, are interested in only one thing: their ideological obsession with 'independence'.

"However, that may now change in light of the UK Government's position".

Sturgeon tweeted that she was not proposing a referendum "now", but before the completion of Brexit and before "it is too late to choose an alternative path".