Tag Archives: european constitution

No Doesn’t Mean No in Europe

EU call to re-run treaty referendums,” by John Thornhill, George Parker in Brussels, and Betrand Benoit, Financial Times, 25 May 2005, http://news.ft.com/cms/s/3dd561b6-cd4f-11d9-aa26-00000e2511c8.html.

The EU’s lack of respect for democracy isn’t new news, but it’s good to keep tabs on it. Hat-tip to Catholicgauze

France and the Netherlands should re-run their referendums to obtain the “right answer” if their voters reject Europe’s constitutional treaty in imminent national ballots, Jean-Claude Juncker, the holder of the EU presidency, said on Wednesday.

The Luxembourg prime minister said all 25 EU member countries should continue their attempts to ratify the treaty whatever the outcome of the French and Dutch votes.

But it’s get better

The countries which have said No will have to ask themselves the question again. And if we don’t manage to find the right answer, the treaty will not enter into force,” he said in an interview with the Belgian Le Soir newspaper.

To borrow the most annoying of the anti-Iraq-Liberation slogans,

Love without consent is Rape

The French to Save Tony Blair?

French opposition to EU treaty intensifies,” by John Lichfield, Independent, 4 April 2005, http://news.independent.co.uk/europe/story.jsp?story=626136 (From Democratic Underground).

The European Union is not the European union that France wanted. It is not the Future France wanted to create. Given that, it is not too surprising that the French are now euroskeptics

Hostility to the European Union constitution is hardening in France, despite increasingly desperate attempts by government and opposition leaders to rescue the collapsing “yes” vote before the referendum next month.

An opinion poll published yesterday showed that 55 per cent of French voters who had reached a decision were likely to reject the proposed new EU treaty in the vote on 29 May.

Worryingly for the “yes” camp, the latest survey – the sixth in a row to predict a “no” vote – shows an erosion of support for the treaty on the centre-right and a hardening of attitudes on the left.

Even when bribes are thrown in…

Senior political figures admit privately it may be impossible to turn around the extraordinary momentum gained by the no vote over the past three weeks. Efforts by the centre-right government last week to bribe public sector workers with an inflation-linked pay rise have had no immediate impact. Neither have dire warnings from President Jacques Chirac and others that a no would plunge European and French domestic politics into deep crisis. He will make his first major contribution to the campaign in a live television debate on Thursday

The new treaty or Constitution is, basically, stupid. It frightens a lot of people by giving the transnational European Union a lot of vague powers (which worries Britain) and vague talk about free markets (which worries that French). In America we would sign the treaty and ignore it, but the Euros take things more seriously.

The important news: French intrasigence may save Tony Blair’s political career. Tony Blair has promised a vote on the new treaty, which is deepy unpopular in Britain. Losing a vote of that importance would seriously harm Blair’s credibility. Further, if the other countries vote yes, Britain may be asked to leave the European Union.

However, a French no vote gives everyone cover. Great news!