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The "Scottish Government has proposed holding a second referendum on Scottish independence from the "United Kingdom (UK). In March 2017, the "Scottish Parliament authorised the Scottish Government to request a transfer of powers from the UK Parliament to hold a referendum,[1] but the "UK Parliament and "Government has not agreed to this request to date. "Scotland is one of the four "countries of the United Kingdom (UK). It has representation in the UK Parliament and the "devolved Scottish Parliament has control over some internal matters.

A "referendum on Scottish independence was first held in September 2014, when 55% voted against the proposal. One of the reasons cited by those opposed to "Scottish independence was that it would endanger Scotland being part of the "European Union (EU). Following the "Conservative victory in the "May 2015 UK general election, a referendum on UK membership of the EU was organised. The "Scottish National Party (SNP), which supports Scottish independence, stated in its manifesto for the "May 2016 Scottish Parliament election that it would consider holding a second independence referendum if there was a material change of circumstances, such as the "UK leaving the EU. The "Leave" side won the June 2016 referendum with 52% of the vote. In Scotland, 62% of votes were to "Remain" in the EU, including a majority of voters in every local authority area.

There has since been debate about whether there should be a second Scottish independence referendum, or if it is possible for Scotland to maintain links with the EU after the UK leaves. On 16 March 2017, Prime Minister "Theresa May stated that "now is not the time" to discuss another referendum, because the focus should be on "working together, not pulling apart" for "Brexit negotiations.[2] That month, "Nicola Sturgeon, the "First Minister of Scotland and leader of the SNP, announced she would seek Scottish Parliament approval to negotiate with the UK Government for a "Section 30 order enabling a second independence referendum, which would take place between late 2018 and early 2019, "when the shape of the UK's Brexit deal will become clear";[3] this approval was obtained on 28 March. At the end of March, The First Minister sent the formal request to the UK Government for a Section 30 order.[4] To date, there has been no formal response from the UK Government.

SNP support for a second referendum was suggested to be a contributory factor to the party losing seats in the "2017 United Kingdom general election. The party won 35 of the 59 Scottish seats, 21 fewer seats than in the "2015 election. On 27 June 2017, Sturgeon declared that her government would "reset" the referendum plan to delay it until after the Brexit process has finished, instead of being held during the ratification period.[5]



Scottish independence referendum, 2014[edit]

Four out of the thirty two council areas returned majority votes in favour of Scottish independence from the "United Kingdom.

The referendum on Scottish independence held on 18 September 2014 saw Scotland vote to remain part of the United Kingdom (UK), with 55.3% voting against the proposal for Scotland to become an independent country and 44.7% voting in favour. Uncertainty over Scotland's European Union (EU) membership was a topic in the run-up to the referendum vote.[6] The British government and some mainstream political parties argued that remaining in the UK was the only way for Scotland to remain part of the EU.[7][8] The Scottish Government's official publication on the independence referendum stated that "It is the view of the current Scottish Government that a referendum is a once-in-a-generation opportunity",[9] a point reiterated by the SNP's then-leader, "Alex Salmond, a few days before the vote.[10] Three months later, Salmond reversed the position, highlighting the UK's EU referendum as a factor.[11] The UK government had also portrayed the independence referendum as once-in-a-generation.[12]

Though the proposal for Scotland to become an independent country was voted down in 2014, the referendum did result in more responsibility being passed on to the Scottish Government. The latest move in the devolution process that began in 1999, the UK Government's passage of the Scotland Bill in 2015 increased the devolved powers held by the Scottish Government.[13]

United Kingdom general election, 2015[edit]

Results of the 2015 United Kingdom general election

The "2015 UK general election was held on 7 May almost eight months after the independence referendum was held. In their manifesto the SNP said in response to the "Conservatives manifesto pledge promising a referendum on EU membership by the end of 2017 if elected.[14]

The European Union is far from perfect, however we believe that it is overwhelmingly in Scotland’s interests for us to remain a member, engaging with the institutions as fully as we can, and to argue for reform from within. We will oppose UK withdrawal from the EU and will propose that, in any future referendum there should be a double majority requirement. Each of the four constituent nations of the UK would have to vote for withdrawal before the UK as a whole could leave the European Union.

The SNP went on to win 56 of the 59 Scottish seats that were contested in an unprecedented landslide winning 50% of the national vote and left just three unionist MP’s north of the border whilst nationally the "Conservatives led by "David Cameron won an unexpected overall majority, their first since 1992 and following their victory passed the "European Union Referendum Act 2015 which legislated for the holding of a national UK-wide referendum on EU membership which would be held following the conclusion of a "renegotiation of the UK’s membership to the EU.

Scottish Parliament election, 2016[edit]

Results of the 2016 Scottish Parliament election

The elections to the Scottish Parliament took place on 5 May 2016, seven weeks before the holding of the EU Referendum. In their manifesto for the "2016 Scottish elections, the SNP stipulated conditions under which they would seek a second independence referendum.[15]

We believe that the Scottish Parliament should have the right to hold another referendum if there is clear and sustained evidence that independence has become the preferred option of a majority of the Scottish people – or if there is a significant and material change in the circumstances that prevailed in 2014, such as Scotland being taken out of the EU against our will.

The SNP was re-elected in the 2016 election, winning 63 seats in the 129-seat chamber, although the result meant that they no longer held an overall majority.[16] The pro-independence "Scottish Green Party won 6 seats,[16] meaning that pro-independence MSPs maintained a majority.[17]

The "Green manifesto stipulated that a second referendum should be held if there was public demand for one, rather than as a result of "calculations of party political advantage". The party specified that their preferred method of showing support for a referendum was via a public petition, although their manifesto didn't clarify how many signatories there would have to be to receive their support.[18]

Citizens should be able to play a direct role in the legislative process: on presenting a petition signed by an appropriate number of voters, citizens should be able to trigger a vote on important issues of devolved responsibility. As we proposed on the one year anniversary of the Independence Referendum, this is the Scottish Greens’ preferred way of deciding to hold a second referendum on Independence. If a new referendum is to happen, it should come about by the will of the people, and not be driven by calculations of party political advantage. In such a referendum the Scottish Greens will campaign for independence.

United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, 2016[edit]

All thirty two council areas in Scotland returned majority votes in favour of remaining in the "European Union, contrasting with other parts of the UK, who ultimately carried the overall "UK leave vote.

In the EU membership referendum held on 23 June 2016 all 32 council areas in Scotland voted by a majority for the UK to remain a member of the EU. 62% of Scottish voters voted to remain a member of the EU, with 38% voting to leave. Overall 52% of voters in the UK voted to leave the EU, with 48% voting to remain. Majorities in England and Wales were in favour of leaving the EU.[19]

Before the referendum, leading figures with a range of opinions regarding "Scottish independence suggested that in the event the UK as a whole voted to leave the EU but Scotland as a whole voted to remain, a second Scottish independence referendum might be precipitated.[20][21] Former Labour Scottish First Minister "Henry McLeish asserted that he would support Scottish independence under such circumstances.[22] In 2013, Scotland exported around three and a half times more to the rest of the UK than to the rest of the EU.[23] In 2015, Scotland exported around four times more to the rest of the UK than to the rest of the EU.[24] The pro-union organisation Scotland in Union has suggested that an independent Scotland within the EU would face trade barriers with a post-Brexit UK and face additional costs for re-entry to the EU.[23]

In response to the result, on 24 June 2016, the "Scottish Government said officials would begin planning for a second independence referendum.[25][26] "Scottish First Minister "Nicola Sturgeon said it was "clear that the people of Scotland see their future as part of the European Union" and that Scotland had "spoken decisively" with a "strong, unequivocal" vote to remain in the European Union.[27] Sturgeon said it was "democratically unacceptable" that Scotland could be taken out of the EU "against its will".[25][28] In February 2017, the Scottish Parliament voted 90 to 34 to oppose the UK leaving the EU and to oppose "invoking Article 50.[29]

United Kingdom general election, 2017[edit]

Results of the 2017 United Kingdom general election in Scotland.

The "2017 UK general election returned a "hung parliament resulting in Theresa May's "Conservatives returning as a minority government through a "pact with the "Democratic Unionist Party.

The SNP remained as the third largest party in the UK "House of Commons, but its representation was reduced to 35 of the total 59 Scottish MPs, with 21 fewer seats than they won in the "2015 general election and its popular vote in Scotland reduced from 50.0% in 2015 to 36.9% in 2017.

Nicola Sturgeon made the statement "Undoubtedly the issue of an independence referendum was a factor in this election result, but I think there were other factors in this election result as well," in light of the election result.[30]

Opposition to a second referendum is one of the issues that former SNP MP "Angus Robertson and "Scottish Conservative leader "Ruth Davidson have attributed to a decline in support for the SNP.[31]


Scottish Independence Referendum Bill[edit]

On 16 October 2016, the Scottish Government published a draft bill that would enable a second Scottish independence referendum to occur, after receiving "legislative consent. The Scottish Independence Referendum Bill draft is largely similar to "its sister act of 2013, and has been put out for consultation by the government to allow members of the public to convey their views on the wording and procedures of the bill.[32] The bill will require the consent of the UK government for the referendum result to be made legally binding.[33]

See also, "Scottish independence#Legality and legitimacy


Following the EU referendum, Nicola Sturgeon stated that the Scottish Government, the "devolved executive of Scotland, had agreed to draft legislation to allow a second independence referendum to take place.[34]

As the constitution is a 'reserved' matter under the Scotland Act 1998, for a future referendum on Scottish independence to be binding under UK law, it would need to receive the consent of the British Parliament to take place.[35] A referendum would not be legally binding under UK law if the consent of the UK Parliament is not given.[36][37] Under the Sewell Convention of the 1998 act however, the Scottish Parliament could approve a "consultative referendum" on the subject of independence, which would enable the referendum taking place without the approval of the British Parliament.[38] Under this convention, the Scottish Government is authorized to issue a "legislative consent memorandum," which would signal to the United Kingdom Parliament that Scottish Government has deemed it necessary to alter a law enacted by the UK Government or to change the scope of the devolved government's powers in some manner.[39]


"Scottish Secretary "David Mundell stated, on 26 June 2016, that "if the people of Scotland ultimately determine that they want to have another [independence] referendum there will be one", and added "Could there be another referendum? The answer to that question is yes. Should there be another referendum? I believe the answer to that question is no."[40]

On 13 October 2016, Sturgeon announced that an Independence Referendum Bill will be published for consultation the following week.[41]

On 13 March 2017, Sturgeon announced she would seek Scottish Parliament approval to negotiate with the UK Government for a "Section 30 order enabling a second independence referendum.[3]

On 16 March 2017, ahead of the scheduled debate, Theresa May responded by broadcasting a message where she said that "now is not the time" for a second referendum on Scottish independence, as it would be unclear what the people of Scotland would be voting for.[2] Ruth Davidson later appeared at a press conference in Edinburgh and stated her position that "we will maintain that it should not take place when there is no clear public and political consent for it to happen".[2]

The debate began on 22 March 2017, but following that day's "Westminster terrorist attack, it was suspended before a vote could take place. The vote was subsequently rescheduled for 28 March, a day before Theresa May was scheduled to trigger Article 50.[42]

On 28 March 2017, the Scottish Parliament voted 69–59 on Motion S5M-04710, in favour of holding a second referendum on Scottish independence.[43][44] Prior to the passage of the motion, a "Green Party amendment was passed, by the same margin, that seeks to enable 16 and 17 year-olds and EU citizens the opportunity to vote in a referendum.[45]

The full motion, with the Green Party amendment in italics:

That the Parliament acknowledges the sovereign right of the Scottish people to determine the form of government best suited to their needs and therefore mandates the Scottish Government to take forward discussions with the UK Government on the details of an order under section 30 of the Scotland Act 1998 to ensure that the Scottish Parliament can legislate for a referendum to be held that will give the people of Scotland a choice over the future direction and governance of their country at a time, and with a question and franchise, determined by the Scottish Parliament, which would most appropriately be between the autumn of 2018, when there is clarity over the outcome of the Brexit negotiations, and around the point at which the UK leaves the EU in spring 2019; believes that this gives people in Scotland a choice at a time when there is both the most information and most opportunity to act; further believes that 16 and 17-year-olds and EU citizens, who were excluded from the EU referendum, should be entitled to vote, and considers that this referendum is necessary given the Prime Minister’s decision to negotiate a hard exit from the EU, including leaving the single market, which conflicts with assurances given by the UK Government and prominent Leave campaigners, and which takes no account of the overwhelming Remain vote in Scotland.

Following the 2017 UK general election, Nicola Sturgeon announced that the Scottish Government would postpone legislation pertaining to the proposed second referendum on Scottish independence until at least autumn 2018, when it is believed that the outcome of Brexit negotiations should become clearer.[5]


Scotland's future relations with the EU and EEA[edit]

The results of the "European Union membership referendum by voting areas. Scotland, "Northern Ireland, "London, and "Gibraltar voted in majority to remain in the "European Union, contrasting with other parts of the UK, who ultimately carried the result of "leaving.

Following the EU referendum result, Sturgeon said she would communicate to all EU member states that Scotland had voted to stay in the EU.[46] An emergency Scottish cabinet meeting on 25 June 2016 agreed that the Scottish Government would seek to enter negotiations with the EU and its member states, to explore "options to protect Scotland's place in the EU".[47][48] On 28 June 2016, Sturgeon said that "independence [...] is not my starting point in these discussions. My starting point is to protect our relationship with the EU."[49]

After a summit of EU leaders on 29 June 2016, Sturgeon held meetings with some EU officials.[50] She raised the possibility of parts of the UK remaining within the EU, or for these areas to have special arrangements with the EU, after the UK leaves.[50] "David Edward, a former justice of the "European Court of Justice, suggested that these arrangements would relate to policy areas that have been devolved to Scotland.[50]

Sturgeon also met with European Commission president "Jean-Claude Juncker, who commented that "I will listen carefully to what the first minister will tell me... but we don't have the intention, neither "Donald Tusk nor myself, to interfere in an inner British process that is not our duty and this is not our job."[51] "Manfred Weber, leader of the "European People's Party Group, and "Guy Verhofstadt, leader of the "Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Group, indicated that they were supportive of Scotland remaining an EU member.[52][53][54] Gunther Krichbaum, head of the Bundestag's Committee for EU Affairs, made supportive comments about Scotland becoming a member state of the EU.[55]

"Spanish Prime Minister "Mariano Rajoy said: "[be] very clear Scotland does not have the competence to negotiate with the European Union".[51] He also stated his opposition to the EU negotiating with "anyone other than the government of United Kingdom" and that "if the United Kingdom leaves... Scotland leaves".[51] Similarly, the "French President, "François Hollande, stated: "The negotiations will be conducted with the United Kingdom, not with a part of the United Kingdom".[51]

The Scottish European and External Affairs Committee held an evidence session on 30 June 2016, asking a panel of four experts (Dr Kirsty Hughes of "Friends of Europe, Prof Sionaidh Douglas-Scott of the Queen Mary School of Law at the "University of London, Sir David Edward and Prof Drew Scott of the "University of Edinburgh) what they felt was the best way to secure the Scottish-EU relationship.[56] Hughes stated that "the simplest and most obvious way would be to be an independent state and transition in and stay in the EU", Douglas-Scott said that "Legally there are precedents. [...] But there were also political difficulties", referring to "Catalonia in Spain. Edward believed "Scotland makes quite a good fit with Iceland and Norway", referring to the "European Economic Area and the "European Free Trade Association, while Scott hinted that Scotland could be a successor state, meaning the rest of the UK would leave but Scotland would retain its seat.[56]

The new UK Prime Minister "Theresa May met with Sturgeon on 15 July 2016 in "Edinburgh, when May stated that she was "willing to listen to options" for Scotland,[57] although she later stated that some options were "impracticable".[58] Sturgeon then publicly stated that she had five tests for any future arrangements.[59] The "IPPR thinktank stated that "Scottish unionists needed to provide options for Scotland, if they wished to retain the British union.[58] The "Scottish Labour Party published an 'Action Plan' in July 2016, focusing on the economy.[60]

In November 2016, Sturgeon confirmed to members of the Scottish Parliament that the Scottish Government was considering European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and European Economic Area (EEA) models in order to "protect [Scotland's] place in the single market" of Europe even if the United Kingdom as a whole does leave in a "hard "Brexit".[61] The SNP's 2017 General Election manifesto stated that "the Scottish Government [led by the SNP, had] published proposals that would keep Scotland in the Single Market, even as we left the EU."[62]

In their manifestos for the "German federal election, 2017, the "Free Democrats and the "Greens stated that EU membership would remain an option for Scotland and Northern Ireland (as well as for the rest of the UK), if they left the UK.[63]

Legislative consent in disapplying EU law[edit]

The "Scotland Act 1998 empowers the "Scottish Parliament to legislate in policy areas devolved to Scotland, but one of its clauses obliges the Scottish Parliament to ensure its legislation is compatible with European law.[64][65] For the UK to completely leave the EU, it would need to remove that obligation.[65] If the UK Parliament wishes to legislate on policy areas devolved to Scotland, or if it wishes to amend the powers devolved to Scotland, by convention it needs the Scottish Parliament to pass a ""legislative consent motion".[64][65] On 26 June 2016, Sturgeon said she would ask the Scottish Parliament to withhold consent if she thought it was not in Scotland's interests.[66] Giving evidence to a House of Lords committee before the EU referendum, "David Edward suggested the consent of the Scottish Parliament would be needed for this legislation.[64]

Media reports suggested this might give the Scottish Parliament a veto over UK withdrawal from the EU,[64][67][68] but under the Scotland Act 1998 the UK Parliament could ultimately override the "veto" as it is based only on parliamentary convention.[64][65] Alternatively, the UK Parliament could choose to disregard the obligation for the Scottish Parliament to observe EU law.[65] The then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, "Theresa Villiers, said that the UK Government would consult with the devolved governments and noted that it was for the UK Parliament to decide whether to leave the EU by repealing the "European Communities Act 1972.[69] In its ruling in the "case brought by "Gina Miller regarding the UK Government's authority to invoke Article 50, the "UK Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the devolved governments did not have a veto as the convention was unenforceable in law.[70] Speaking later that week the Secretary of State for Scotland, "David Mundell, said that the bill needed to invoke Article 50 would not require consent, but also said he was working under the assumption that the "Great Repeal Bill" needed to remove European legislation from UK statutes would require co-operation from the devolved bodies.[71]

Responses to the prospect of a referendum[edit]

See also, for comparison "Scottish independence referendum, 2014#Responses

Responses by politicians to the possibility of a second referendum have been pro-independence (and pro-referendum), pro-union, or pro-federalism.

In support of a referendum[edit]

Former SNP "First Minister "Alex Salmond in June 2016 said the Brexit vote was a "significant and material change" in Scotland's position within the United Kingdom, and that he was certain the "Scottish National Party would implement its manifesto on holding a second referendum.[72][73]

Scottish Greens co-convener "Patrick Harvie, on 13 March 2017 welcomed the confirmation from the First Minister that she is seeking a Section 30 Order from the UK Government to give the Scottish Parliament temporary power to call a referendum on independence.[74]

"Scottish Socialist Party spokesman "Colin Fox said the SSP would "work as hard as anyone to deliver a Yes vote for independence", but warned that making Scotland’s EU membership a central and “overarching” issue of the debate would be “a risky strategy” and said it ran the risk of side-lining economic and social challenges facing Scots.[75][76]

A few days before the 2017 General Election, Sturgeon was asked about the prospect of a third referendum if the proposed second one did not result in a vote in favour of independence.[77] She refused to rule out a third referendum within a few years, saying that, "I don't think it's right for any politician to dictate to a country what its future should be. I think that should be a choice for the people of Scotland."[77]

Opposed to a referendum[edit]

British party leaders[edit]

Then Conservative "Prime Minister "David Cameron stated in June 2016 that "There was a legal, fair and decisive referendum two years ago [...] the last thing Scotland needs now is another divisive referendum" and that the "best possible deal for the United Kingdom will also be the best possible deal for Scotland".[78][79][80]

A spokesperson speaking on behalf of Cameron's successor as Conservative Party Leader and Prime Minister, "Theresa May, said in October 2016 "The prime minister and the government does not believe that there is a mandate for [a second referendum]. There was one only two years ago. There was an extremely high turnout and there was a resounding result in favour of Scotland remaining in the UK."[81]

Labour Party leader "Jeremy Corbyn said in March 2017 that a referendum would be "absolutely fine" and that "I don't think it's the job of Westminster or the Labour Party to prevent people holding referenda." However, a spokesman for Corbyn later said "Labour continues to oppose a further referendum in the Scottish Parliament and would campaign against independence if one were held."[82]

Then "Liberal Democrats leader "Tim Farron in March 2017, said: “Scottish Liberal Democrats stood for election last year on a platform to oppose a new independence referendum. That is what we will do."[83]

Scottish party leaders[edit]

"Scottish Conservative leader, "Ruth Davidson, in June 2016 expressed her opposition to a second Scottish referendum, saying that the country needed stability.[48][84] She then said in March 2017 that "The SNP is ... acting against the majority wishes of the people of Scotland" by proposing a second referendum.[85]

Then Scottish Labour leader "Kezia Dugdale said in July 2016 that it would be "categorically wrong" for the UK Government to block a second independence referendum if the people want it.[86] In February 2017, she said that "Our country still bears the scars of the last one [referendum], and no one wants to go through that again any time soon ... That's why Labour will never support one [a second referendum] in the Scottish Parliament". She also supports a federal Britain.[87][88] After the SNP lost 21 seats in the "2017 general election "Kezia Dugdale stated that this was the "final nail in the coffin" for a proposed second referendum.

"Scottish Liberal Democrats leader "Willie Rennie said in March 2017, "We stood on a platform last May where we said we were against independence and against another independence referendum",[89] he also said, "No independence referendum, either at Westminster or in the Scottish Parliament – that's the view of the Liberal Democrats."[90]

Opinion polling[edit]

Results of polls to 30 Nov 2017

In nearly every opinion poll following the EU membership referendum, participants are asked to respond to the question or subtle variation of:

If the referendum was held again tomorrow, how would you vote in response to the question: Should Scotland be an independent country?

utilising the final six words (in italics) as in the 2014 referendum question. A response of "Yes" therefore is for Scottish independence and a response of "No" for remaining in the United Kingdom.

Polls vary in how weightings are applied (methods of which are not described by the polling organisations) and in which participants are excluded from the final data (based on how likely they are to vote). There is an inherent ± 3% "margin of error based on a sample size of ~1,000.

Following EU membership referendum[edit]

Only polls from companies that are members of the "British Polling Council, and therefore fully disclose their findings and methodology, are shown in this section.



Includes 16 and 17 year-olds? Polling organisation/client Sample size Yes No Undecided Lead Notes
24-28 Jan 2018 Online Yes Survation/Daily Record 1,029 42% 50% 8% 8%
12–16 Jan 2018 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,002 37% 50% 10% 13%
1–5 Dec 2017 Online Yes Survation/The Sunday Post 1,006 42% 49% 8% 7%
27–30 Nov 2017 Online Yes Survation/Daily Record 1,017 42% 48% 10% 6%
2–5 Oct 2017 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,135 39% 50% 8% 11%
8–12 Sep 2017 Online Yes Survation/Scottish Daily Mail 1,016 42% 49% 9% 7%
31 Aug–7 Sep 2017 Online Yes Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,021 40% 53% 6% 13%
9–13 Jun 2017 Online Yes Survation/Daily Record 1,037 39% 53% 7% 14%
8 Jun 2017 "United Kingdom general election, 2017
6–7 Jun 2017 Telephone Yes Survation/Daily Record 1,001 36% 56% 7% 20%
2–7 Jun 2017 Online Yes Panelbase 1,106 41% 53% 6% 12%
1–5 Jun 2017 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,093 38% 50% 8% 12%
31 May–2 Jun 2017 Online Yes Survation/The Sunday Post 1,024 42% 50% 8% 8%
22–27 May 2017 Telephone No Ipsos Mori/STV 921 45% 51% 3% 6%
15–18 May 2017 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,032 39% 49% 8% 10%
4 May 2017 "Scottish local elections, 2017
24–27 Apr 2017 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,017 40% 49% 8% 9%
18–21 Apr 2017 Online Yes Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,029 43% 52% 5% 9%
18–21 Apr 2017 Online No Survation/Sunday Post 1,018 43% 48% 9% 5%
7–11 Apr 2017 Online Yes BMG/Herald 1,041 43% 45% 11% 2%
29 Mar–11 Apr 2017 Interview Yes TNS 1,060 34% 53% 13% 19%
13–17 Mar 2017 Online Yes Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,008 42% 53% 5% 11%
9–14 Mar 2017 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,028 37% 48% 11% 11%
8–13 Mar 2017 Online Yes Survation/Scottish Daily Mail 1,019 43% 48% 9% 5%
13 Mar 2017 "Nicola Sturgeon announces the intention to seek approval for a "Section 30 order enabling an independence referendum
24 Feb–6 Mar 2017 Telephone Yes Ipsos Mori/STV 1,029 47% 46% 6% 1%
23–27 Feb 2017 Online Yes BMG/Herald 1,009 41% 44% 15% 3%
8–13 Feb 2017 Online Yes Panelbase/Wings Over Scotland 1,028 44% 51% 6% 7%
26–31 Jan 2017 Online Yes BMG/Herald 1,067 43% 45% 10% 2%
20–26 Jan 2017 Online Yes Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,020 43% 51% 7% 8%
9–16 Dec 2016 Online Yes BMG/Herald 1,002 40% 47% 13% 7%
29 Aug–16 Dec 2016 Online No YouGov 3,166 39% 47% 11% 8%
24th–29th Nov 2016 Online Yes YouGov/The Times 1,134 38% 49% 13% 11%
28 Sep–4 Oct 2016 Online Yes BMG/Herald 1,010 39% 47% 15% 8% Non-standard referendum question[notes 1]
9–15 Sep 2016 Online Yes Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,024 44% 50% 7% 6%
5–11 Sep 2016 Telephone Yes Ipsos Mori/STV 1,000 45% 50% 5% 5%
5–10 Sep 2016 Online Yes Survation 1,073 42% 48% 10% 6%
10 Aug–4 Sep 2016 Interview Yes TNS 1,047 41% 47% 12% 6%
29–31 Aug 2016 Online No YouGov/The Times 1,039 40% 46% 13% 6%
20–25 Jul 2016 Online No YouGov 1,005 40% 45% 14% 5%
13 Jul 2016 "Theresa May becomes the "Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
24–28 Jun 2016 Online Yes Survation/Scottish Daily Mail 1,055 47% 41% 12% 6%
25–26 Jun 2016 Online Yes Panelbase/Sunday Times 626 47% 44% 8% 3%
25 Jun 2016 Online Yes Survation/Daily Record 1,002 48% 41% 9% 7%
24 Jun 2016 "David Cameron resigns as "Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
"Nicola Sturgeon announces her government would draft legislation for a second independence vote
23 Jun 2016 "United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, 2016
18 Sep 2014 "Scottish independence referendum, 2014 results 3,623,344 44.7% 55.3% 10.6%

Regional opinion polling[edit]

"Edinburgh South[edit]

Edinburgh South had the highest proportion of Remain votes of any parliamentary constituency in Scotland outside of "Glasgow North and "Edinburgh North and Leith at the "2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum at 77.8% Remain 22.2% Leave.

Polling organisation/client Sample size Yes No Undecided Lead Notes
8 Jun 2017 "United Kingdom general election, 2017
3–4 April 2017 Survation/Stop Brexit Alliance 530 34% 55% 10% 21% Excludes 16 and 17 year-olds
18 Sep 2014 "Scottish independence referendum, 2014 results 58,738 34.7% 65.3% 30.6%

Polls conducted before the EU referendum[edit]

Before the "United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, 2016, there were some opinion polls conducted which asked people if they would vote for Scottish independence in the (then hypothetical) event of a "leave" vote in that referendum.

Polling organisation/client Sample size Yes No Undecided Lead
23 Jun 2016 "United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, 2016
6–16 Jun 2016 TNS 1,008 43% 46% 9% 3%
6–10 May 2016 ICM/The Scotsman 1,000 44% 47% 9% 3%
23–28 Apr 2016 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,074 47% 44% 9% 3%
6–15 Apr 2016 Panelbase/Sunday Times 1,021 46% 45% 9% 1%
1–7 Feb 2016 Ipsos Mori/STV 1,000 54% 39% 7% 15%

On the prospect of a second referendum[edit]

Analysis of opinion polling from early 2017 by Professor "John Curtice found that around 50% of Scottish voters were opposed to the holding of a second referendum on Scottish independence, with just over a third in support of holding another referendum.[91]

Opinion polling in England and Wales[edit]

In 2014 a plurality (41%) of people polled in England and Wales thought that Scotland would vote to remain in the United Kingdom.[92] However, an "Opinium poll carried out 28–30 June 2016 showed a marked change, with 69% believing that Scotland would vote for independence in a second referendum, with 16% believing it would vote against independence.[93]

Opinion polling in the European Union[edit]

Polls conducted by YouGov in July 2016 found majority support in Germany (71%), Denmark (67%), Finland (66%), Sweden (64%) and France (61%) for Scotland becoming an EU member should it become an independent state, with plurality support in Norway (46%) and the United Kingdom as a whole (41%).[94]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Instead of the 2014 referendum question, respondents were asked "If a referendum were held tomorrow, on whether Scotland should leave or remain part of the United Kingdom, how would you vote?" and given the options of "To Leave the United Kingdom" and "To Remain in the United Kingdom", which have been mapped to Yes and No here respectively.


  1. ^ Dickie, Mure (28 March 2017). "Scottish parliament backs second independence referendum". Financial Times. 
  2. ^ a b c "Scottish independence: Referendum demand 'will be rejected'". BBC. 16 March 2017. Retrieved 17 March 2017. 
  3. ^ a b "Scotland must have choice over future". "Scottish Government. 2017-03-13. Retrieved 2017-03-13. 
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