Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Thursday, 20 October 2011

A Debate on a Referendum

So at long last, Parliament is going to have a debate about having a referendum on Britain's membership of the EU!

But the general consensus of the media seems to be that the debate will be lost because the Tories will be whipped to vote against it, or possibly some government stooge will table a "Spoiler" motion or amendment as has happened in the past with other issues.

I take the view that any MP, whether pro or anti the EU should vote for a referendum if he/she believes in democracy. A referendum is the ultimate expression of the wishes of the electorate, and any MP who votes against one is effectively saying to the electorate that he knows better, or, more succinctly, "drop dead"! Even the LibDems should support a referendum, if they are right in their beliefs that the public want be in the EU, the referendum will confirm this and put the argument to rest for a good few years. Surely they are not so dishonourable as to be taking the position "We believe in the EU, and whether you believe or not, you are not going to have a say in the matter". This was the view of the Medieval Church - perhaps the LibDems see the EU as the new religion!

But what will happen if we are allowed a referendum?
I suspect that Brussels officials will do their best to ensure that there is a "No" vote to leaving the EU. I anticipate that they will spend billions of our money on campaigning and producing scare stories about how withdrawal will wreck our economy, the environment and anything else that they can think of.

The problem doesn't stop with getting a referendum, the bigger problem will be how to get a fair referendum and hopefully this will be properly addressed in due course.

1 comment:

  1. I agree. The EU issue has been a running sore in the political life of this country for decades now. A proposal for a referendum should actually have the strongest support from the pro-EU lobby, who presumably believe that the public would well up in support of Brussels and put the issue to bed for a lifetime.

    Of course, anyone who believes that a referendum should not be held because it would produce the wrong answer should be taken away for re-education.