Thursday, 20 October 2011

This parliament will finally debate an EU referendum

I recently tweeted about some good news. The latest post from Daniel Hannan has the details:

On Monday, in response to a popular petition, the House of Commons will divide on the following motion:

This House calls upon the Government to introduce a Bill in the next session of Parliament to provide for the holding of a national referendum on whether the United Kingdom:
A) Should remain a member of the European Union on the current terms;
B) Should leave the European Union;
C) Should re-negotiate the terms of its membership in order to create a new relationship based on trade and co-operation.

Cameron and Clegg must be furious, and will no doubt be instructing the whips to deny the people a say. Will our supposed representatives show backbone?

I have sent my MP another email:
Dear Mr Smith,

When I wrote to you in March, you replied that you are "sympathetic in principle to our membership of the EU being subject to a further referendum at some point, given in particular it is now so long since the original one on the Common Market, and so much having changed since then".

I see that you have not yet signed the People's Pledge.

How do you intend to vote on Monday?

The proposed referendum question seems perfectly reasonable to me, and long overdue.
I eagerly await a reply.


I've just seen James Delingpole's latest blog. He quotes a Telegraph article that confirms my suspicions:

Even as MPs agreed to hold a Commons vote on a referendum, government sources made clear that the Tories would be whipped to vote against a poll.

Mr Cameron's decision to impose a three-line whip has angered many MPs, since the vote was called under rules the Coalition promised would give backbenchers more freedom.

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