Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Renegotiation is not possible - Nikki Sinclaire MEP writes for Public Service Europe

Taken from PublicServiceEurope.com
David Cameron has pinned his hopes on renegotiating Britain’s relationship with the EU – but it simply will not be possible and a binding in/out referendum is the only solution, writes MEP
At a press conference in the European Parliament in Strasbourg last week, President Martin Schulz delivered a crushing blow to British Prime Minister David Cameron’s planned renegotiation of the United Kingdom’s relationship with the European Union. Asked by a BBC journalist if he had any advice for Cameron in advance of his much vaunted speech on the EU, and if renegotiation were possible, Schulz replied: “Nein.” No renegotiation of the treaties would be possible, he stated.
This was on the same day as an internal poll in the parliament revealed that two-thirds of Eurocrats believe that Britain must now make up its mind – stay or go. Our present position, one foot in and one foot out, is bad for us and it is bad for the EU, and patience is wearing thin. Renegotiation is simply not possible. The idea of the other 26 member states all agreeing to Britain’s demands for treaty changes in the council – because unanimity would be required – is preposterous. We must remember that we are but one voice, and the other 26 member states, soon to be 27 when Croatia joins, all buy into the federalist vision of the EU in one form or another.
One has to wonder what his advisers are telling him. Or is this what politicos would call ‘Symbolic Policy’, intended as a statement but without any realistic expectation of implementation? I suspect that this may well be the case. One of Cameron’s predecessors John Major once returned from an EU summit claiming to have negotiated significant concessions. At the same time the French press ran the headline: “Britain Caves In.” Perhaps Cameron is hoping to pull the same trick? The electorate will remember well his ‘cast iron guarantee’ of a referendum on ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, which he subsequently back-tracked on. Surely nobody can trust him on Europe after that?
In the last five days, we were given three different dates for Mr Cameron’s speech, and then with just hours to go it was postponed. Some may question the official reason given for this, but whatever the real reason, it is very clear that the prime minister is not in control of events. We need to make a decision now. Do we become a part of the coming federal European state, or do we leave? That decision must be made by the British people, as the decision to stay would effectively mark the end of an era, and the beginning of a new path for us.
The decision to leave would mean that virtually overnight we would have to retake control over areas of sovereignty that we have already ceded to the EU. Our relationships with our neighbours, allies, and trading partners would change. It would be a challenging time, but we all know that as a nation we are at our best when faced with great challenges. The question must be put to the people through a binding ‘in or out’ referendum and it must be done soon. Cameron is playing party games with the future of our country, and this matter is too important for that. Give us a referendum and let the people decide.

Nikki Sinclaire MEP launched the We Demand a Referendum party in the United Kingdom
Read more: http://www.publicserviceeurope.com/article/2970/camerons-eu-renegotiation-simply-not-possible#ixzz2Id1N5a3d