Fast-forward to today and Nicola Sturgeon closed another SNP virtual four-day conference with a promise to get Scotland through the pandemic – particularly in the light of the new variant – but that by spring she will “initiate the process necessary to enable a referendum before the end of 2023” – the deadline she has set herself to deliver on another constitutional vote.

If it feels like déjà vu, that’s because it is. Much has been written recently about how Scotland is stuck in a constitutional loop, endlessly waiting for a second referendum and its outcome before it can move on any of the pressing issues facing Scots, but the fact is that the SNP is stuck too.

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