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The election of a significantly larger number of SNP MPs may open old discussions within the party about the strategy to achieve independence. Craig McAngus considers the tensions within the party, where they came from and where they’re going next.

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There is, it seems, nothing new under the sun. Brad MacKay considers the predictions of massive SNP gains and finds that they have echoes of an earlier Canadian experience.
 
Political debates, by their very nature, are insular. The referendum on September 18th on Scottish independence was frequently presented as being unprecedented, yet Québec had previously had two on secession from Canada in 1980 and 1995. The recent political history of Canada also provides some interesting lessons and parallels for what is an uncertain British election.
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There has been much fevered speculation on the implications of a group of Scottish National Party MPs creating havoc in the Commons after this election.  In this piece, James Mitchell, suggests that a more informed and sober assessment suggests that a ‘large’ contingent of SNP MPs will create opportunities but also challenges for the SNP and that the greatest impact will be on the SNP than the House of Commons. 
 
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The SNP's positioning itself as the anti-austerity party has resonated with parts of the electorate. However, explains David Eiser, analysis of their spending commitments by the IFS suggests that that's not quite how things would work in practice.

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Whereas Scottish Parliamentary elections give a platform to Scotland-centred issues, Westminster General Elections in Scotland are usually very British affairs. Especially since devolution in 1999, UK elections have been dominated by the contest for Prime Minister and the party of British government. Not so this time, however much the Labour Party would like it to be.
 
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  • 10th August 2018

    Brexit is re-making the UK’s constitution under our noses. The territorial constitution is particularly fragile. Pursuing Brexit, Theresa May’s government has stumbled into deep questions about devolution.

  • 8th August 2018

    The UK in a Changing Europe has formed a new Brexit Policy Panel (BPP). The BPP is a cross-disciplinary group of over 100 leading social scientists created to provide ongoing analysis of where we have got to in the Brexit process, and to forecast where we are headed. Members of the UK in a Changing Europe Brexit Policy Panel complete a monthly survey addressing three key areas of uncertainty around Brexit: if —and when—the UK will leave the EU; how Brexit will affect British politics; and what our relationship with the EU is likely to look like in the future. The CCC participates on the Panel.

  • 2nd August 2018

    The House of Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee issued its report ‘Devolution and Exiting the EU: reconciling differences and building strong relationships’. Discussing its contents, Professor Nicola McEwen suggests that the report includes some practical recommendations, some of which were informed by CCC research. It also shines a light on some of the more difficult challenges ahead.

  • 31st July 2018

    The politicisation of Brexit, combined with deteriorating relations between London and Dublin, has created a toxic atmosphere in Northern Ireland, says Mary Murphy, which will require imagination and possibly new institutions to resolve.

  • 25th July 2018

    Given that there are many policy differences between Northern Ireland and other parts of the UK, asks Jonathan Evershed, why has customs policy been singled out as a red line by Unionists?

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