As the dust settles, there comes a realisation for the Conservative backbenchers…The UK is still part of the EU and, in all likelihood, it is going to remain that way.
David Cameron has pledged that he will grant an in/out referendum on the UK membership of the EU if and only if, the UK votes him back to power in 2015. Sorry Mr Hannan – but that is a big if by anyone’s standards.
I hope that everyone can see this for what it is, political posturing. Has Cameron explained what has changed since October 2011 when he ruled out the possibility of a referendum? This a transparent last grasp effort to plug a UKIP shaped haemorrhage in the Tory voter demographic?
This the point where all those of us who still like to occasionally grasp the stinging nettle of democracy wait for Labour (you know, those who are paid to oppose the government, colloquially referred to as ‘the opposition’) are meant to step in as the bastion of democracy and demand that the people of this isle be given their say. Their response…
John Denham, said, “We think now is the wrong time to have an in-out referendum”
Douglas Alexander chipped in with, “We have never ruled out the possibility of a referendum in the future, because in international affairs you should never say never”. We might invade Iceland, you can never say never!
Glenis Willmott (who?) clarified Labour’s commitment to democracy saying, “talking about referenda just creates uncertainty and costs British jobs”. Yes, democracy costs too much.
In short, they’re either against a referendum (*cough* democracy *cough*) or they might be for it, depending who on the shadow front bench you listen to.
In light of this, Sunny Hundal the editor of Liberal Conspiracy makes the pertinent point:
How, with months to prepare, did Labour HQ manage to come across as the “we are anti-democracy but not sure what we think party”?
In contrast to this, the usually media challenged Green Party were on the money.
They had three promises, “3 yeses to Europe”
- Yes to an in/out referendum
- Yes to major EU reform
- Yes to staying in the EU
A simple, clear and crucially democratic message!
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