Deputy First Minister John Swinney did not say directly that the SNP would barge ahead with a vote without the government's consent, but speaking on the BBC's Radio 4 Today program, he cautioned May over refusing to give consent for another referendum.
The stance of UK Prime Minister Theresa May on a potential second Scottish independence referendum is "not sustainable" and contradicts people's democratic will, Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said Friday.
The most dramatic option open would be to trigger a snap Scottish parliament election by resigning as first minister, forcing Holyrood to dissolve at a crucial time during the UK's Brexit talks with the EU.
During her 30-minute speech to Conservative members, Mrs May mocked the SNP for it's "muddled" argument to break up the United Kingdom.
The former PM will also call for the repatriation to Scotland of £800 million of money now spent by the European Union, and propose the Bank of England becomes the Bank of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland with fully-staffed representation in Scotland "to reinforce the fact that the pound is for everyone".
"The patriotic way means that Scotland is not caught between a die-hard conservatism that denies the Scottish Parliament the powers it needs and a hard-line nationalism that throws away the resources we secure from being part of the Union".
The UK government is to reject calls for a Scottish independence referendum before Brexit after Theresa May said "now is not the time".
"We have seen that tunnel vision on display again this week".
"The coming negotiations with the European Union will be vital for everyone in the United Kingdom".
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Even so, May insisted that Britain's best days lie ahead, after the country has left the EU. The Prime Minister has said what she has said.
May described Brexit as a moment of opportunity to shape a brighter future for Britain and "ask ourselves what kind of country we want to be". Mr Brown will call for the Scottish Parliament to be handed control of £800 million in current European spending and get power to set Value-Added Tax rates, sign global treaties, and control agriculture, fisheries, environmental regulation, employment and energy.
"That brighter future won't just happen".
And she told Mr Robertson: "You are comparing membership of an organisation that we have been a member of for 40 years, with our country".
Scottish Conservative chief whip John Lamont said: "Nicola Sturgeon said as late as Thursday that a referendum after April 2019 would be "too late".
It was a call to change the balance of Britain, to make the United Kingdom a country that works for everyone, not just the privileged few, added May.
He was particularly forthright on claims that Nicola Sturgeon and the Scottish government were so focused on a second bid for independence they were neglecting "the day job" of focusing on other key policy areas, like education.
The SNP is expected to win the vote in the Scottish Parliament with support from the Greens.