A British referendum?

I’d have put this news in the quicklinks section, but I’m sure some people will want to discuss it. Reports today are saying that Tony Blair has made a U-turn and that Britain will now be holding a referendum on the EU Constitution.

4 thoughts on “A British referendum?

  1. Blair’s continued refusal to agree to a referendum on the proposed EU Constitution became untenable.

    Seven other EU states are already committed to holding national referenda once agreement has been reached on a final text. It has also became transparently evident that if the final text is much like the current draft – with provision for shared competences between the EU and national governments in foreign affairs, defence and coordination of economic policies – it would be impossible to credibly sustain the claim, repeatedly made by some ministers, that the constitution is no more than a “tidying up exercise”.

    However, the timing of any referendum remains uncertain and the terms of the precise wording of the question put has to be agreed. In the meantime, much will doubtless be made of Blair’s U-turn. I am not sure it is sufficiently widely understood that all EU member states have to approve the proposed Constitution for it to be adopted. If any hold back at the final text, then some compromise position has to be negotiated. Schroeder has recently signalled that a “two-speed” is a preferred option in that eventuality.

  2. It seems to me a very likely explanation for the timing of Blair’s announcement today of a future referendum on the EU costitution in Britain is as a monumental distraction from the mounting problems of the Iraq war and Britain’s engagement in it.

  3. “Tony Blair has just become the first prime minister to turn himself into a suicide bomber.”

    I agree. But consider the options.

    A) Getting crucified by his own party if they lose the referendum.

    B) Becoming the scapegoat later when EU policy stagnates the country.

    The EU Constitution in it’s current incarnation is so needlessly complicated and restrictive that all members will be dragged down with the mainland welfare states that are anxious to implement it. And don’t even think about unilaterally responding to a terror attack.

    It’s my opinion that the EU “Superstate” is more about counterbalancing the US than the welfare of individual members. “US of E” policy won’t be about right and wrong, it’ll be about trying to keep the US contained. Even if it means sacrificing integrity and national security.

    “Peace in our time”, Zap.

Comments are closed.