With all the opposition parties opposed to the decision, there are going to be fireworks, and I suspect that there will be some vitriolic attacks on Mr MacAskill.
There are going to be calls for his resignation, and as a minority Government the SNP are going to find these difficult to resist.
I expect a motion of no confidence in Mr MacAskill to be turned into a threatened motion of no confidence Alex Salmond; as the only practical way he can defend Mr MacAskill's position is to up the stakes and to see who blinks first.
That would be a high risk - for everyone - but having seen this tactic used previously, it is likely that Labour will be ready for this. However, I suspect that the weak link in the united front is the LibDems, who will be less likely to be keen on an immediate election.
I'd love to try and call what is going to happen, but I can't at the moment. It is certainly going to be a high stakes game this afternoon, but I strongly suspect that by the end of the day Mr MacAskill will no longer be in post.
Update 5pm: I think Kenny MacAskill acquitted himself quite well in the Chamber, taking the stance that he had sole responsibility for the decision and that he would live by his decision. Although he was accused of trying to blame everyone else (by Tavish Scott?) for the decision he took, it was clear that he was not trying to absolve himself of what was obviously a massive decision.
Unfortunately, he had very little he could add to his previous statement which made the whole performance seem like a rehash of the original announcement, and a complete non-event. The tone of the speech sounded like a sermon by as trainee minister, and rarely came to life despite the immensity of the subject matter.
Disappointingly, the chamber was half-empty: where were the rest of them?
The opposition parties will now be dragging the absentees back from the beaches and deciding how to proceed - I suspect a full debate will be staged sooner rather than later, and Kenny MacAskill's position is now more likely to be decided by the tone of the press coverage, rather than the 'skills' of the opposition.
Does anyone think the soft questions, distributed by the whips, and read badly by SNP backbenchers is either big or clever?