An extraordinary story has made the rounds on the continent, and has finally reached our shores:
This story, which relates to the meeting of the EU heads of state on Tuesday evening, after the EU Parliament elections, alleges that Cameron, during the horse-trading about who ought to be taking over from Mr Barroso told Madame Merkel that he would be forced into an early In/Out referendum if Mr Juncker got that job, and that he couldn’t guarantee the UK staying in the EU if that happened.
The reaction of the German public was overwhelming: let the UK go; kick them out; the UK is not needed, they are only ever whining and moaning; they never belonged to ‘us’ in the EU.
This attitude reached from such conservative papers as:-
and the more left-liberal SPIEGEL online
So what does this mean for us?
It means that we now can ask Cameron if he is going to make good on that threat: will he give us the referendum when Mr Juncker replaces Mr Barroso?
He obviously knows that he is not bound to that elusive date sometime in 2017 – if he gets elected and if he gets results from his negotiations. His threat to Madame Merkel only works if he can deliver that referendum now.
This means that we can now demand that he makes good on his word.
We know from past experience that he will not do that, which gives us very welcome arguments against him in the campaign for next year’s elections:
- We know and he knows that these fabled re-negotiations will bring no results – and now we know and he knows that he can give us a referendum now.
- We also know that his utterances on the world stage are nothing but hot air because they are only meant as PR for us in this country. He simply doesn’t ‘get it’ that others hear him as well, and that his PR sentences meant for us are actually damaging to us on that world stage.
If Cameron thinks he can still achieve his goal of keeping us in the EU after that Juncker affair, then I suggest he hasn’t grasped the fact that he has now undermined his own position at that re-negotiation table.
Rejoice – it’s all good for us!