Settled will or divided society? voting in the 1997 Scottish and Welsh devolution referendums

James Mitchell, C. Pattie, D. Denver, H. Bochel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

At least partly because they appear to undermine the doctrine of
parliamentary sovereignty, referendums have been rare events in the United
Kingdom. The only UK-wide referendum was in 1975 (on membership of
the European Community) and before 1997 there had been only three other
significant sub-national referendums - in Northern Ireland (1973) and in
Scotland and Wales on proposals for devolution (1979). The election of a
Labour government in 1997 has resulted in a revival of interest in the
device, however, and during the first 12 months of the new parliament there
were four significant referendums - on a devolved parliament for Scotland,
a representative assembly for Wales, the peace proposals and a parliament
for Northern Ireland, and the government of London. Further referendums
have been mooted on electoral reform, membership of the European single
currency, and devolution to the English regions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)136 - 153
Number of pages18
JournalBritish Elections and Parties Yearbook
Volume9
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1999

Keywords

  • Scottish independence
  • devolution
  • Welsh devolution
  • Scottish government

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