Boogers, how democratic was it to change the goalposts after the postal vote had begun, offering a new devolution deal with a couple of weeks to go before the vote? Then within five minutes of the vote closing it suddenly all became about England with the first BBC interviewee Nigel Farage. 45% wanted to leave UK. That is a strong movement which is unlikely to disappear. I hope it doesn't as I am more and more convinced we could thrive as an independent country.
MT - as one poster has pointed out, after seeing the figures massaged to his satisfaction, we're talking about "45% of those who voted. With 15% not voting, who would presumably have been No voters ... that brings the actual Yes vote down to about 38%.
" The same poster then goes on to say that "I would also discount the vote of the impressionable under-18s, which further reduces the enthusiasm to about 30%. Hardly a ringing endorsement.
(a) I resent the arrogant fact that he considers ALL 16 and 17 year to be 'impressionable', because that certainly wasn't what I picked up from the 13,000 strong audience of that age group who attended a televised debate in Glasgow's Hydro about a week before the referendum. In fact they sounded remarkably well informed and didn't hesitate to show the panel their approval or disapproval of the answers to their questions.
(b) While I agree that the alleged missing 15% can theoretically be described as No voters, what evidence is there to substantiate this? While I'm prepared to accept that most of these invisible voters either couldn't be arsed turning up to vote, or didn't give a sh*t about which way the referendum went, or simply just couldn't make up their minds, I also know that there could well be a lot of people who were unable to vote, either due to unexpectedly having to leave the country on business, or for other circumstances beyond their control. According to my voting card it SHOULD have been possible for them to apply for an emergency proxy vote, but I know of two people living in Edinburgh who tried doing this but who were unable to contact the Electoral Registration Officer, despite several attempts, in time to have a proxy arranged, which is a shame because both would have voted Yes, which begs the question - how many others in Edinburgh could have been affected in this way? I can only hope that those who wanted an emergency proxy in other parts of the country had more success.
As far as I'm concerned 38% is still a healthy figure and one which could easily be built upon.
Also apart from what you say about changing the goal posts after postal votes had been returned, there's another aspect of this referendum which wasn't democratic, and that was the decision that there would be no recounts in cases where Yes and No votes cast for a particular Council were close enough to put the outcome in doubt. Admittedly, as far as I'm aware, this only happened in Inverclyde, although maybe 86 can be considered a reasonable margin, but would Westminster be willing to put this into practice come the GE next May?