Kate Middleton Pregnant with Second Royal Baby
Is a royal baby a factor in Scottish referendum?

Nobody can say the royals don't know how to pull off a few PR tricks. Royal weddings do have a habit of coming along just when the nation is at its most depressed or rebellious, after all.

And nobody doubts the entire family are passionate Unionists, obviously, who would hate to see the UK broken up, leaving them with a far smaller kingdom to rule over.

So it naturally follows that the royal baby announcement is a carefully timed coup (or should that be "coo") aimed at overshadowing the latest poll giving Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond a lead and swinging things back into the Better Together campaign's favour. Except it doesn't follow. Surely.

It is entirely understandable that republicans and ardent nationalists smell a royal rat. And claims the announcement had to be made today, rather than yesterday or tomorrow, are less than convincing.

Even Prince William's declaration that he was thrilled about the second baby but "it's important we focus on big news - international and domestic things - at the moment" raised a few sceptical eyebrows.

But do we really think the Scots are so easily swayed by a gurgling baby - worse, only the prospect of a gurgling baby - that they will abandon all thoughts of the pound, Trident, tax cuts, Europe, oil revenues and so on and instantly all become Unionists.

And do we really think the royals believe the Scots are so shallow, they would be swayed into the "no" camp in a sudden outbreak of chest-puffing Unionism. Again, surely not.

In any case, even if the Scots do vote for independence, they will keep the Queen and the entire royal family. Balmoral will not be taken into public ownership and turned into an SNP grace and favour property.

And if this was a rather crass PR stunt, wouldn't most sensible people groan in despair and conclude they actually didn't want to be ruled by a family that could engage in such demeaning nonsense.

So, no conspiracy then and just the belief that whether you love a baby or couldn't care less, it is unlikely to translate into how you will vote on the future of your nation.