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I said the No side would take Ireland out of the EU. Take “Ireland’s Biggest Free Paper” a Catholic newspaper distributed at the entrance to churches in Ireland. http://www.alive.ie/ – in case you think I am making this up.) In a long feature piece entitled The Lisbon Treaty Your Right to Know, the paper lists,… » read more

Rarely has the Brussels rentrée occurred in such a muddle of doubt and anticipation. Doubt because the October 2 Irish referendum could kill the Lisbon Treaty for good; anticipation because approval of Lisbon should open up new capabilities for Europe and settle the constitutional uncertainty which has dogged the EU for so many years –… » read more

The Irish Cabinet discussed this week whether to bring forward the date of the second referendum on the Lisbon Treaty to 5 June – the same day as the local and European elections. Taoiseach Brian Cowen has previously indicated that the referendum will be held in October. There are pros and cons of advancing the… » read more

A new poll for the Sunday Business Post in Ireland reveals that 58% are in favour of the Lisbon Treaty, 28% are against and 14% are undecided. In my view, the risk of a ‘No’ will be greater after the European Elections than before. The European elections are likely to return a more fragmented and… » read more

No need to lose a Commissioner

The Irish government’s preoccupation with ensuring that it does not lose a Commissioner speaks loudly of its choice of current political priorities. Declan Ganley, leader of the Libertas group, and a force behind the No vote, says that the declarations discussed by the Irish government on a permanent Commissioner and other issues would not have… » read more

Vaclav Klaus’ state visit the Ireland fills one with forboding ahead of the Czech Presidency. And what happened to diplomacy? The Czech President is entitled to his views but also expected to conform with protocol. Klaus met anti-Lisbon group Libertas and its founder, Declan Ganley. At a joint press conference, the President endorsed Libertas’ rejection… » read more

According to Oscar Wilde, wisdom comes with winters. I believe it essential that the Lisbon Treaty ratification process be decided before the June Parliamentary elections and not wait until next October. Winter begins some 10 days after the December summit on 11-12 and that’s where and when a decision must be taken.The Irish government and… » read more

Most of the media reporting of the meeting of the European Council in Bussel was, understandably, on the financial crisis. The following is a summary of all decisions, which is worth browsing, as it gives a flavour of the priorities and extent of current activities:(para numbers do not necessarily correspond to conclusions) Summary 1. Finance… » read more

Jean-Claude Juncker’s view that the Lisbon Treaty cannot come into force until 2010 is entitled to serious consideration. Pressurising the Irish to change their minds could have the reverse effect. But the warnings of two prominent MEPs, Jo Leinen and Alain Lamassoure, must also be heeded. A further delay could have adverse repercussions in the… » read more

Ireland: a constitutional and political quagmire The findings of the Irish government research into the reasons for the rejection of the Lisbon Treaty were published on 10 September. The main reason people voted ‘No’ was a lack of knowledge or understanding of what they were voting on (42%). Taoiseach Brian Cowen will update the European… » read more

Paul Adamson writes today in the Financial Times that Ireland’s gift to the rest of the EU is to raise the question of a Member State losing its Commissioner, this being a key reason why the Irish voted ‘No’ according to the findings of major government research published on 10 September. I do not agree… » read more

Two years ago Dutch and French voters rejected the European Constitution, which was to have ceded substantial remaining national sovereignty, perhaps irretrievably, to a European superstate. Dutch and French citizenry can be forgiven for thinking their votes were dispositive, that the absorption and destruction of the EU’s 27 member states’ had gone far enough. […]… » read more

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