Thursday, October 20, 2011

The In/Out EU Referendum.

When stomping around the rugby fields of the North and Midlands, I developed a reputation for diving in front of the feet of a forwards rush to secure the ball. Led to my nickname, the 'Mad Welshman'. Could easily have stood back from the flailing boots, but couldn't resist the point of dangerous conflict. Which is why I'm keen to get involved in Monday's debate in the House of Commons about our relationship with the EU.taking a clear position on the motion before the House of Commons on Monday to put the option of the UK withdrawing from the EU to a referendum of the British people. Much the safest bet would be stand off and not be noticed, but I'm going in and making my position absolutely clear - and I'm hoping to be called to speak in the debate.

I have been a Euro-sceptic ever since Ted Heath took us in to the EEC in 1974. Became involved in the No campaign in the Wilson referendum in 1975 - first venture into public debate. I was also in favour of a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, and much frustrated when Gordon Brown signed that opportunity away in early 2010. Also believe there will be a referendum at some stage - perhaps as a consequence of the problems in the Euro-zone. But not now - absolutely not now.

Its right to have the debate. I would have expected it to reflect MP's concerns about the excessive interference in matters that should be for a British Government. Such a debate would have been useful. But we have to vote on a motion which offers the people an option to withdraw from the EU altogether, which I do not believe the Coalition Gov't would or should consider at present. The debate will now be about the wisdom of this proposal to hold an In/Out referendum, which will not come to pass. Opening discussions with the EU about withdrawal would be the most enormous distraction from the Government's work to reduce the deficit, and retain international credibility in financial markets, and cause even more problems within the Euro-zone, any collapse of which would have a massive impact on the UK. Holding an In/Out referendum is far more dangerous than diving into the feet of rushing rugby forwards.


JB said...


What'are your thoughts on the Eustice ammendment? Has it got legs?

“This House calls upon the Government to publish a White Paper during the next session of parliament setting out the powers and competences that the Government would seek to repatriate from the EU, to commence a renegotiation of Britain’s relationship with the EU and to put the outcome of those negotiations to a national referendum.”

Glyn Davies said...

JB - Its far better than the motion. Only reservation I have is the 'political' context. In my opinion the motion has made it very difficult to have a rational discussion that engages with the population. As I write, I do not know whether the amendment to a back bench debate is allowable, whether the speaker would allow it to be debated, or what the Government response would be. This only emphasises how unwise it was to put forward such a motion in the first place. It puts many of us in a position of conflict within ourselves as individuals.