Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Because referenda on the Lisbon Treaty are not referenda on EU membership despite everyone and their mother wanting to interpret them that way, whereas the 25% combined vote total by the UKIP and BNP is an explicit vote against EU membership since that's what those parties campaigned on. And the other 25% of Tory vote is also against the EU though as TBG reminds us, if push came to shove the Tory party probably wouldn't advocate withdrawal outright.

Granted, turnout was low, but so it was in every other EU member state. And when people tout the 70% majority for Lisbon in the Spanish referendum, they forget to mention only 40-45% voted, too...

The brainless should not be in banking. — Willem Buiter

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jun 9th, 2009 at 03:55:58 AM EST
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Cameron sleepwalks towards Europe's exit

The timing of the government's demise could mark the difference between a serious argument about Britain's relationship with Brussels and a rupture that would set in train its eventual departure.

It is clear to all that Mr Cameron wants to derail the process of European integration. His decision to withdraw from the European People's party, the European parliament's mainstream centre-right group, is a step in that direction. By aligning with a hotchpotch of small far-right parties, Mr Cameron has downgraded his party's relationship with its French and German cousins.

To move Britain to the sidelines of influence is one thing. To threaten to blow up the Lisbon accord is another. This is what Mr Cameron proposes by pledging to campaign for its rejection in a British referendum. And this is where the timing of the general election really matters.


the consequences would be monumental. Mr Cameron might argue that earlier versions of the treaty were rejected in referendums in France, the Netherlands and Ireland. But these were not conscious acts of government.

Withdrawal from the EPP is a Tory shot across the bows of European integrationists. Wrecking the Lisbon treaty would be a declaration of war. Such would be the crisis in Britain's relationship with its partners that it would precipitate compelling calls for a re-evaluation of its membership of the EU. Many Conservatives, one suspects, would cheer.

The Serious People are not Amused.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Jun 9th, 2009 at 11:35:19 AM EST
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