Spain Shoots Down Barcelona Area's Independence Bid
But region vows to hold it anyway
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Apr 9, 2014 3:25 PM CDT
Pro-independence and Spanish people react outside Catalonia's parliament, as lawmakers were voting on whether to seek a referendum on independence from Spain in Barcelona, Spain, Jan. 16, 2014.    (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

(Newser) – Spain isn't letting Catalonia pull a Scotland. The Spanish parliament has voted decisively against letting the region, which includes Barcelona, hold a referendum on independence. The vote was 299 to 47, with only the Catalan and Basque parties voting in favor; the major Spanish parties were united against it, the BBC reports. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said secession would be "an economic disaster" for Spain and Catalonia, arguing that without Spain, Catalonia would become "the closest thing imaginable to the island of Robinson Crusoe."

But Catalan President Artur Mas says the region will hold the vote in November anyway, even though Spanish courts have ruled it illegal. "This is not the end. It is simply a new paragraph," he promised, according to the Telegraph. He said Catalan would "search through the legal frameworks and find a way." The wealthy region has been itching to cut Spain loose since the country's economic crisis began. A spokesman for one separatist party replied to Rajoy's comments by saying, "We are not Robinson Crusoe. Right now, we are Friday, the servant, who can't even choose his own name."

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Apr 11, 2014 8:43 AM CDT
Pharaoh... Let my people go! World Freedom! World chaos!
Apr 10, 2014 10:27 AM CDT
The constant effort expended by "big" government to withhold democratic choice from people tells much about the "state of democracy" in the world. In essence, democracy has become "a figment in the imagination of the plebes"!
Apr 9, 2014 4:55 PM CDT
'Barcelona area'. Up until late 2012, Newser had no issue with putting 'Catalonia' in the header. The last few times have been along the lines of 'part of Spain'. Has it been a conscious decision to dumb down, or has exposure to your own grid resulted in a BSE/mad cow effect?