29/11/2012 Newsnight Scotland


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Tonight on Newsnight Scotland, the evidence suggests people in England


are no more sceptical about Europe than people here, so why do


politicians in Hollywood squabble about the slightest suggestion that


an independent Scotland would not waltz into the European Union while


their colleagues in Westminster bash Europe and demand cuts in the


Budget? Good evening. As we heard on Newsnight, the question of


benefits from EU membership is very much alive and Westminster. It has


also been in the news here, but only the narrow point of whether


the First Minister have legal advice on Scottish status after


independence. Catriona Renton reports.


He said we will be in Europe and we will have sterling. The notion that


a oil-rich, renewable energy rich Scotland would not be a member of


the European Union and one welcomed with open arms is, to my mind,


patently absurd. They need to show that all members of the European


Union and EU membership had all the necessary... Scotland's 5 million


people, having been members of the European Union for 40 years, have


rights as European citizens... is a word we have been hearing a


lot in the Scottish parliament. In fact, little else has dominated the


political agenda over the last couple of weeks. Would an


independent Scotland automatically stay in Europe, or would it not?


Meanwhile, in the UK government... The remorseless rise of spending in


the EU and in particular the European Union... To give away our


powers and money to the European Union... This financial framework,


the EU budget... A freeze in the European Union budget... It is no


good at the European elections... Here, underneath it all, there


seems to be a rather more fundamental debate going on about


whether the UK wants to be in Europe at all. So first things


first, his Scotland really less Euro-sceptic than the rest of the


UK? This is what the polls Sables de of the truth is that the views


of Scots to Europe are not that different from the rest of the UK.


Maybe at the margins, just a little bit less Euro-sceptic, but we're


only talking about three percentage points. That therefore means that


in Scotland, as in the rest of the UK, the dominant mood is not


necessarily one of wanting to get out of the European Union, but it


is not one of great enthusiasm for closer integration, and if anything


they wish for slightly looser ties. To that extent at least, the mood


in Scotland for some considerable time is not that different from the


rest of the UK. And then there is the question of the debate in the


Scottish parliament, an assumption that Scots would want to be a


member of the EU. There is a presumption amongst opposition


politicians that because the SNP's vision of an independent Scotland


has been within the framework of the European Union, given what that


means in terms of ensuring that Scots would still have the same


freedom of movement and Access to European markets, if the idea that


Scotland were not to be part of the European Union, that would in some


way undermine the credibility of the SNP argument. That clearly is


the presumption which our opponents are coming from. There is a curious


question. It is possible that an independent Scotland could be in


Europe and the rest of the UK out of Europe. Clearly, in a sense, if


we were to become independent and came with the European Union, and


then the rest of the UK wanted to leave the European Union, that


frankly would be a problem for Scotland in the same way as for


Ireland, because all of a sudden we would have to introduce border


controls between Scotland and the rest of the UK. We would no longer


have easy access to the UK market etcetera etcetera. Insofar as there


is uncertainty about the United Kingdom's membership of the


European Union, there are question marks over independence and


Scottish future getting bigger, but it is not entirely clear whether


voting Yes or No is going to be the better way of ensuring Scotland's


continuing membership of the European Union and ensuring the


rest of the UK is in it as well. The word Europe is dominating the


political debate. Who will be in? Who will be out? Will it affect


Well, and joined now by the Labour member of the European Parliament,


David Martin, the SNP the SNP -- SNP MSP Annabelle Ewing Edinburgh,


and my apologies to Jamie McGrigor, the lie was also hoping to


interview from Edinburgh, but we have had a problem with a fire


alarm, so I'm afraid Annabelle Ewing is a lot! David Martin, I am


curious whether you would support the stance that Labour took


yesterday in the House of Commons in voting to cut the European


budget. Well, I think firstly the whole debate about the budget has


been exaggerated. The EU budget is 1% of GDP, 1.5% of public


spending... We know that, but was Ed Miliband right or wrong to do


what he did? On the specifics, why worry is that the specifics have


been lost, but on the specifics, which is to say that we have to cut


expenditure on the Common Agricultural Policy, we have to cut


wastage from the EU budget and focus on jobs and growth, he was


right. I find it unfortunate that he had to go into the lobby with


Tory Euro-sceptics to make that Annabelle Ewing, why do the SNP


vote to cut its budget. Good evening. I must say I did not hear


the whole of the package because we have been standing outside.


Evidence shows that people in Scotland are no less Euro-sceptic


than people in Scotland. One your question of the vote in the House


of Commons, we supported the cash freeze. In the circumstances we all


face at the moment, there was a reasonable position to adopt.


McGrigor, which Conservative Party are you in? Did you bash David


Cameron or supporting? I am in the Scottish Conservative Party and I


think David Cameron is a fine Prime Minister. And? And what? What way


would you have voted? Well, people want to send a message from their


constituents that enough is enough and everyone has got to buckle down,


and that includes Europe and the European Parliament as well, and we


have to have a budget that is a little bit more frugal. Your


concern... We were stuck outside. Yes, I understand. You don't want


Labour to position themselves as being anti-European? Not a tour. If


we want to create jobs, I am not just talking about the single


market... The pin is, it was a Iraq opportunity by Ed Miliband. It was


an opportunity to make a statement about the European budget.


British politics is dominated by some sort of Euro-sceptic event to


get a vote, your colleagues's boats will be responsible for that.


depends whether or not we get a reformed European budget. It


depends on how we position ourselves and get our message


across. It is about jobs, not just the single market. That only way


the European Union and the UK through the European Union...


and so to cut you off, but we don't have much time. -- I am sorry to


cut you off. Why are the SNP so keen on this? You are better


banging on about how bad the fisheries policy is. What do you


find attractive about this? For us, we believe it is in Scotland's


national interest to be at the heart of the decision-making


process in the European Union. That he'd been there is that we need to


be at the top table. We need a seat at the top table because at the


moment... But you said... But in his about fishing is that the Tory


Prime Minister Ted Heath who took us into the European Union stated


that Scottish fishing interests were expendable, so I pink that


sold to a lot about where Scotland has been on his journey and when it


needs to go because we need that seat at the top table to represent


our own interests. One of the like Norway? Have your oil fund and be


happy ever after? What do you find attractive about the European


Union? He is important for Scotland's national interest.


makes you think that? You referred to Norway's little oil fund. They


own 1% of the global oil equities. There is a clamour among


Conservatives in Westminster to have a vote, a referendum on in or


out of Europe. Where would you be on that? I think a referendum may


come in due course. My view is that I wouldn't rate to stay in Europe


because I think that we are better at together in the same way that we


are better to be in the United Kingdom. So you would not want a


referendum in favour of getting out? Not to talk, unless things


have got so bad in Europe it will be in our best interests not to be


in. But on balance, we are better to be part of a family of nation


states. My apologies to beat three of you and to the viewers. -- the


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