In many ways, the tight result of tonight's confidence vote is the dream outcome for the Yes campaign in #Referendum2023. Even by the standards of Tory PMs, Boris Johnson is horrifically unpopular in Scotland, and now he will stagger on, further weakened, and be the vision of government that unionists present as the alternative to independence next year. The hardening of Brexit, which also forms a key part of what the Yes campaign will be arguing that Scotland needs independence to avoid, will also now not be thwarted in the interim by the election of a more moderate Tory leader.
But of course these massive advantages for Yes only hold true because the majority SNP-Green government have guaranteed that the referendum will take place well before the general election in 2024. If they hadn't done that, and if there was any question of the referendum not taking place until after 2024, tonight would have considerably eroded the prospects for independence. Labour are more likely to win the 2024 election now that a weakened Boris remains in harness, and Brexit is thus more likely to be softened a little after that election. The post-2024 environment would be a much less favourable one in which to seek a Yes majority. So there can no longer be any doubt that the SNP leadership did absolutely the right thing by facing down those in their own party calling for a further kicking of the can down the road, and instead saying absolutely firmly, "no ifs, no buts", the referendum simply MUST and WILL be held during 2023. Bring it on, because we all know that now the promise of a 2023 referendum has so wisely been made, we can count on the SNP-Green government to deliver it.
SCOT GOES POP #Referendum2023 COUNTDOWN CLOCK
There are just 213 days until the earliest possible date for #Referendum2023 (5th January)
There are just 563 days until the last possible date for #Referendum2023 (21st December)
(Note: the Countdown Clock calculations assume that tradition will be maintained by holding #Referendum2023 on a Thursday, and that it will be before Christmas.)
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