SCOTTISH INDEPENDENCE BETTING: Bookmakers think a referendum will happen soon

Nicola Sturgeon celebratingJeff J Mitchell / GettyNicola Sturgeon told the BBC on Sunday that a Scottish referendum could happen next year.

Bookmakers are taking Nicola Sturgeon’s suggestion of another Scottish independence referendum seriously — and say another vote before 2020 is likely to happen.

Sturgeon — the First Minister of Scotland and leader of the Scottish National Party — told the BBC’s Sunday Politics Scotland over the weekend that another referendum could happen as soon as the next year.

Prime Minister Theresa May met Sturgeon in Edinburgh on Friday to assure her that Brexit negotiations would only happen as a union — but also that she was against another Scottish independence vote as the previous one in 2014 sent “a very clear message.”

But Sturgeon countered on BBC radio that there could still be another referendum:

“If you are asking me right now, do I think Theresa May will never ever trigger Article 50 unless I am saying to her I am absolutely happy with the direction that the UK is taking, I don’t know that that is the case, but what she did seem to indicate is that she wants, as I want, to see if we can find options that respect how Scotland voted.

“I will have an independence referendum if I come to conclusion that is in the best interests of Scotland. I’ve always said that. It would be up to Scottish people ultimately to decide if that is right way to go.

“Scotland is not a region of the UK, Scotland is a nation and if we cannot protect our interests within a UK that is going to be changing fundamentally, then that right of Scotland to consider the options of independence has to be there.”

Ladbrokes has odds of 4/7 on a “next independence referendum held before end 2020,” while the odds of “no independence referendum held before end 2020” are much longer at 5/4.

William Hill, meanwhile, thinks that in the event of an independence referendum the vote could go either way, giving odds of 10/11 on both a “Yes” and a “No” vote.

Just over 55% of Scotland voted to stay in the UK in 2014, but with 62% voting to remain in the EU in the June Brexit vote, there could be considerably more who now want to leave the UK should another independence referendum happen.

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