It simply involves making the existing arrangements work better so that the EU

It simply involves making the existing arrangements

This preview shows page 34 - 36 out of 102 pages.

have alleged. It simply involves making the existing arrangements work better, so that the EU is fit for purpose and can be ever more successful. That is what the anti- Europeans do not like. Nothing upsets the Europhobes more than the idea that some of the widely acknowledged problems of the EU might be tackled. Mr. MacNeil: If the hon. Gentleman is so sure of his case, why did he run from giving the people a referendum? Mr. Davey: I do not know whether the hon. Gentleman voted against our proposal to debate and vote on a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU. I bet he voted with the Tories and Labour to try to gag that debate. It is particularly interesting to compare comments on the Lisbon treaty with past criticisms of Europe. Take, for example, the Conservative amendment tabled for the Second Reading debate on the previous European treaty, the treaty of Nice. The Conservatives opposed that treaty because, according to their amendment,
Image of page 34

Subscribe to view the full document.

“it fails to modernise the institutions and policies of the European Union to meet the requirements of a diverse, enlarged Union”.—[ Official Report , 4 July 2001; Vol. 371, c. 273.] Perhaps that is still some people’s argument, but those who argue that should probably be carted off by the men in white coats. However, if another set of reforms would “modernise the institutions and policies of the European Union”, we have not heard about that alternative agenda. Throughout our debates, we have not had a positive alternative set of EU reforms from the Conservatives—not a single idea. Silence on an alternative Conservative approach and silence on whom the Conservatives might talk to elsewhere in Europe about ideas for EU reform, which they do not have. They are bereft of ideas and bereft of allies. Mr. Cash rose— Mr. Davey: I give way to the hon. Gentleman, because he has some ideas for reform. 11 Mar 2008 : Column 185 Mr. Cash: I make no apology for saying that I would prefer an association of nation states. Does the hon. Gentleman not accept that to achieve economic competitiveness of the kind that my right hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr. Cameron), the leader of the Conservative party, is putting forward, we will need to proceed along a line that ensures, through some form of renegotiation, that we get ourselves out of the mess that the Lisbon agenda is in at the moment? Mr. Davey: That is very interesting, as the Foreign Secretary is saying from a sedentary position. As we know from these debates, the hon. Member for Stone (Mr. Cash) is increasingly at the centre of the Conservative party. Perhaps it is now the Conservative party position to renegotiate. We have not heard about that, but, as the right hon. Member for Richmond, Yorks said of us, I am coming to him later. Mr. Sheerman: The hon. Gentleman has mentioned the men in white coats. Is it not the case that many people out there have been put off these debates because it is clear to those who observe proceedings in the Chamber—I was able to attend the debates on only three days—that the lunatics have taken over the asylum?
Image of page 35
Image of page 36
  • Fall '08
  • Finklerberg

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern

Ask Expert Tutors You can ask You can ask ( soon) You can ask (will expire )
Answers in as fast as 15 minutes