SCOTTISH Labour MSP Alex Rowley has called for “home rule” to be considered as part of the ongoing debate around a second independence referendum.

Rowley, who represents mid-Scotland and Fife said “all options” should be on the table as part of the ongoing debate around a second independence referendum, including devo max alongside yes and no options. Speaking to The Herald on Sunday, he claimed Scotland is currently in a “constitutional stalemate”.

“It results in poor government, rewards political parties for maintaining divisions, and we therefore have to find a way forward and settle the issue,” he said.

Rowley claimed division and healing the nation cannot be solved by “telling 50% of the population they are wrong”. “The way forward must be an open and civil debate that examines the issues and has all options on the table,” he said.

“My own view is the option of home rule must be considered as part of the debate but, regardless, the significant and material change since 2014 means the same binary choice is no longer on the table.”

However, the SNP MSP Rona MacKay hit back, stating that “no-one can trust” Scottish Labour to stick to their word.

MacKay said: “Scottish Labour made the same vow to Scotland in 2014 and then broke that promise. No-one can trust them to stick to their word this time. And no amount of constitutional tinkering would protect Scotland from the catastrophe of Brexit or the Tory created cost-of-living crisis. 

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“The only way Scotland can escape corrosive Westminster control is with the full powers of independence. However, Alex Rowley clearly recognises Scotland’s right to choose its own future in a referendum so he should be demanding his boss, Anas Sarwar, dumps his Donald Trump policy of denying clear democratic election results delivered by the people of this country.”

Party leader Anas Sarwar has consistently ruled out backing a second referendum. When asked on the Sunday Show if he believed an independence referendum should be “categorically” ruled out over the next 10 years, he said: “We said right at the start of the election campaign that we believe the focus of this Parliament should be on our recovery and that’s why we didn’t support a referendum. 

“On the principle of Scots having a right to choose, of course I believe that Scots have a right to choose. But basically, during term we should be focusing on recovery.”

Sarwar also stated he will be “setting out in a couple weeks’ time” his vision for alternatives to a second independence referendum, stating that Labour wants to demonstrate that “the next electoral context is going to be a general election”. 

“[We want to show] what voting Labour in that general election means and what change looks like right across the United Kingdom, to what change looks like for people in Scotland”, Sarwar said. 

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“Yes, the Tories are a disaster, yes I want to boot them out, yes I don’t agree with the priorities of the SNP – I think they’re a bad government here in Scotland – but we can’t wait for the public to want them to lose. We’ve got to serve them.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, along with Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie, fired the starting gun on the indyref2 campaign last week as they launched a series of new documents making the case for an independent Scotland.

Sturgeon insisted a referendum will be held with or without a Section 30 order, while Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross vowed to boycott any “wildcat” ballot.

A recent Scottish Election Survey found that 55% of voters considered the results of the last election to be a mandate for indyref2, based on a neutral question.