BREXIT has exposed so many of the Unionist claims leading up to Scotland's independence referendum as nonsense.

Speaking in the House of Commons on Theresa May's meaningful vote, SNP MP Mhairi Black addressed that issue.

As ever, Black's speech did not disappoint – she even pulled out a HM Government document from House of Commons library, with "a stoater on every page".

Below is the full transcript of her speech.


Mhairi Black: Mr Speaker, when I started to write this speech I truly did not know where to start. So, I’ll try to explain my feelings and views on this madness as bluntly and as simply as possible.

Since long before the ink had even dried on the text, the Prime Minister has been trying to create this narrative that it’s a choice between her deal or no deal. But the Prime Minister quite clearly has other options beyond her deal and no deal. She could ask for an extension of Article 50, she could keep us in the single market and customs union, or she could take the choice back to the people. So to say that it’s her deal or no deal is a piece of nonsense.

And what she’s failing to say to the public is that she has deliberately manufactured things to appear that way in a cynical attempt to save her own skin.

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Now I’ll be voting against her deal for the simple fact that it is an appalling deal for my constituents. And that’s not just me looking at this and making a decision on their behalf. Thousands of my constituents have written to me since the deal was announced and over 97% of them have asked me to vote against this deal.

But to explain my thoughts and my feelings a wee bit better, I must go back a few years. Because you see, I often hear members, and I’ve heard it even today … members from frankly all sides of the house accuse the SNP of not respecting the result of the 2014 referendum or the 2016 referendum. They are wrong, Mr Speaker. The key difference between us and those who criticise us that we do not fear referendums, we do not fear democracy, we do not fear holding up our vision and hopes for a better Scotland to the electorate to at least consider – and most importantly, we’re not afraid to learn lessons.

The very presence of my SNP colleagues and I in this very parliament serves as evidence that we do respect the outcome of referendums. Because when Scotland voted no, we said, okay, we didn’t convince you, that’s fine, so long as Scotland wants to stay in this British union, we will respect that. But let us fight to make sure that we get everything that we were promised. If anything, Mr Speaker, it seems that it is the winners of both of these referendums that are terrified of being held to account for the promises that they made.

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As I mentioned earlier when I intervened on the minister, I went to the House of Commons library and I managed to dig out this … well actually the wonderful staff dug out this HM Government booklet that was sent out during the Scottish referendum. Which of course was a Tory coalition as I was corrected, but Tory nonetheless. I have to be honest, there’s a stoater on every page, Mr Speaker.

Page one, all the advantages of the pound. That’s the same pound that had an 18-month low. Safe savings and pensions. I wonder if WASPI women will agree with that. We had more support for public services. Followed by an austerity agenda. We had the one that I mentioned earlier – “as one of the EU’s big four nations, the UK is more able to protect Scottish interest in areas like agriculture and fisheries”. And on the last page, Mr Speaker, it says we are a successful family of nations.

The exact quote is: “Together with England, Wales and Northern Ireland, Scotland has created one of the world’s most successful families of nations.”

Now that’s a legitimate point of view, but it’s one that doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. Because, call me biased Mr Speaker, but this doesn’t feel very successful right now. If you’re an EU national, or a nurse, or a student, or you’re working on the minimum wage, I doubt this feels successful. If you’re a lorry driver in Dover, I imagine it feels even less successful.

Now, I believe in independence for Scotland for democratic, logical and moral reasons. But when Scotland voted no to independence, at least we came here for a genuine fresh start, to try to make this union work better and find some compromise where possible. And after all these promises and all the precious union chat that’s dished out by British nationalists in this place, when Scotland votes to remain in the EU, it is cast aside as irrelevant, because it was a UK-wide vote, where Scotland is treated as a region.

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The people of Scotland watched as our Scottish Government tried to make sensible suggestions and compromises with the UK Government with regards to Brexit, asking for continued Scottish membership of the single market and customs union. And this wasn’t even considered.

So if Unionist members truly believe that Scotland should be subject to an English and Welsh EU result, then they concede that we are not a family of nations. And that to Westminster, Scotland is no more than a province. Or, they live up to their partnership of equal patter, and they recognise that the second largest nation in this family of nations, has outright rejected leaving the EU, and they show us the respect that we’re due.

Either way, this hypocritical double-speak will not wash much longer in Scotland. And like most things on the Government’s plate these days, time is running out. And to be honest, who knows how much longer Scotland is going to stick about.