What am I going to do about the EU?

Several bloggers have asked what I am going to do about the EU. I will continue to do what I have been doing for years. Set out the facts. Make the case to change our relationship. Put the Eurosceptic position in the Commons.

I explained before the Election that if we did not have a Eurosceptic majority in the House after the Election it would be difficult to achieve what we wish. I set out after the Election that once again a Eurosceptic country (according to issue polls) had voted for a Pro EU Parliament. That means there is no majoritry in the Commons to do many of the things bloggers would like us to do.

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45 Comments

  1. Sue
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    All in all, we got a courageous bunch of MP’s!

    Is it completely irrelevant that you no longer represent us? Has it passed your notice that the events of the last week have been made without our consent?

    Obviously not…

    Reply: I know the public want a lower EU budget, for example, and voted for one. Only 41 other MPs did so.

  2. Norman Dee
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

    It’s not the bloggers alone that want change, we are the noisy tip of an iceberg, and not everyone who would want change knows they do because of the lack of awareness of the extent of the damage that is being done. Write to Cameron tell him he is not representing the population, he is representing his narrow pro europe outlook which he concealed before the election, and concealed in the worst possible way.

  3. Cliff
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

    Here in Wokingham we are lucky as our MP appears to be Eurosceptic however, what can those living in other constituencies do, if they have a choice of Pro EUSSR candidates from Labour and the Libdems or a Conservative(sic) a la Cameron model?
    The electorate really are stuck between a rock and a hard place and have little chance of a representitive democarcy. There are so many issues where our politicians ignore the view of the majority and just carry on with thier own agendas. Is this what democracy is all about? Does anyone else on here see the irony that, as we go around the world trying to impose democracy onto other states, at the same time we are loosing our own as we sink further and further into the EUSSR. I personally feel it is too late now to stop the “project” and would advise anybody young and able enough to get out while they still can. It looks like today in the USA, the American people are going to say a big NO to the type of politics and progressive Marxism that has infested Europe, shame it is now too late for us to do the same here in the UK.

  4. Richard Calhoun
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    As we appear so unable to change our relationship in parliament tben perhaps we need a UK ‘teaparty’ movement, in other words not a party like UKIP but a pressure group.

    It may be that the focus should be economics ( the EU would soon become an issue) as the UK electorate in general don’t get excited by the EU.

    This would be an opportunity to bring together all the various pressure groups ( TPA, Freedom Assn, / parties ( UKIP) and try and influence events instead of just letting it all happen.

    Let’s face it UKIP is only a pressure group and they could divert their energies much more directly if they were not concentrating on trying to win seats in parliament.

    • David Magauran
      Posted November 4, 2010 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

      I have long thought that the real Eurosceptics should stand up for their principals rather than hide behind what has become of the Conservative party, or indeed the Labour Party. What we need is a ‘Real Conservative Party’ to vote for. That would include the various disparate parties that long for us to be truely independant and free. If the Eurosceptics had any real convictions they would follow that course. Then we would have a voice in parliament with some strength behind it.

  5. Winston's Black Dog
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    A little disingenuous if I may be so bold!

    Conservative Central Office parachuted Europhile candidates into many constituencies (under the guise of diversity and all the rest of the PC nonsense) ignoring the wishes of local constituency party members many of whom are Eurosceptic.

    Thus, to put it bluntly, by voting Conservative one could have 326 Tory Ken Clarkes or David Camerons which is no different to where we are now!

    I voted UKIP because I only hear Euroscepticism from Conservatives at election time. If in Government then, as Cameron has demonstrated all too clearly over the past few days, they supinely capitulate to the EU. If in opposition they give Labour an easy ride towards “closer integration.” Cameron’s derisory opposition to and broken promises regarding Lisbon sum it up!

  6. John Bailey
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    A nation of spineless, indoctrinated morons no longer deserve their own Independent country.

    Which is ironic because we no longer have one and we deserve all we get, our Government in Brussels will make sure of that, and there is nothing the rubber stampers of EU diktats in Westminster will do about it.

  7. Conservative Libertarian
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    Weak.

  8. Patrick Wood
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    As I see it the biggest problem is that out of the two main eurosceptic parties, the Conservatives and UKIP, only one of them has a realistic chance of coming into power.
    All UKIP do is, rather than gaining greater representation for the eurosceptic cause, they take votes off of the Conservatives that could help swing the balance in a general election. I can understand why they should wish to stand in a European Parliament Election but realistically in a general election a vote for UKIP is a wasted vote.
    Ironically it is my view that until UKIP is taken out of the equation proper EU withdrawal will remain a distant dream.

  9. Stuart Turner
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    I think the trouble with trying to secure a Eurosceptic parliamentary majority is not that the public are not Eurosceptic, but that most voters consider other factors during a national election. It is our duty to link issues they feel passionate about such as immigration with the EU.

    That will take a long time to sink in, but us Eurosceptics will not succeed until this has been done.

  10. lifelogic
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

    Yes and the reason for that is because Cameron totally failed, at the election, to put a proper conservative case to the electorate. He seems to be essentially a Ted Heath type of socialist/big government, big society, no conviction type of leader. Doubtless it will all end in a similar predicable disaster to Heath (and John Major and his expensive and mad ERM experiment).

    Please keep up the good work yourself though and maybe even now more MPs and even Cameron might be encouraged to see sense. The signs however are profoundly depressing. Particularly now as we have all seen just how unprincipled and venal so many MPs actually are.

  11. Rich
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    There are probably not enough Eurosceptics in the Tory party to fill a phone box.

  12. Andrew Johnson
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    I see your dilemma John. If there is a pro EU majority in Parliament, then perhaps Eurorealist MP’s, Lord’s, Ladies, MEP’s and Councillors across the parties should be thinking about forming a coalition to highlight that the world has changed rapidly and the EU is no longer as necessary to Britain’s future well being as it was once thought to be. The communication tools are there – TV, radio, Internet, Facebook, Twitter, Newspapers, aps, meetings. The strategists are there – the thinkers and policy makers are there – the communicators are there.
    The GB electorate is, broadly speaking, pro-sovereignty rather than anti EU. Give them the facts, show them what the future could be, tell them why you believe it is very much in Britain’s interests to withdraw and why, and you will create immense pressure for that to happen. The Tea Party has transformed American politics, the Sovereignty Coalition (Sovereignty – the quality of having supreme, independent authority over a geographic area, such as a territory) could do the same for British politics.
    Your party leader appears well suited for the task of leading the Lib/Con coalition. His political views seem to be firmly in the middle of the road, but there’s very little evidence of Eurorealism or of a distinctive conservatism. What have all you Eurorealist politicians got to lose? The policy of trying to change from within has been singularly unsuccessful.
    Is it time to nail your colours to the mast, even if that brings about a General election?

  13. Iain
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    By the way Cameron is acceding to EU policies you might think there is a massive EUphile majority.
    What ever Conservative MP’s are doing isn’t enough, by a long, long, way it isn’t enough. Cameron can only bring in these EUphile policies because he knows the Tory back benches are feeble lot, and they will swallow what ever EUphile polices Cameron shoves down their throats. You MP’s might be, in Westminster political speak, ’pragmatic’ , but the rest of us knows it to be weak feeble appeasers, and while your memories might be short, we though will remember.
    You know what I am actually looking forward to the next EU elections, looking forward to giving Cameron what he deserves!

  14. norman
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think it’s a question of what you and like minded colleagues can do, we know that you stand up for traditional conservative values and liberty.

    It’s more a question of what we, who feel helpless and disillusioned by the direction the EU is taking, can do. In truth, nothing. Even if we can persuade people to join the Party, attend local meetings and selections there is still little impact. The most we can do is vote UKIP in European elections, and they are now second only to another Eurosceptic Party in EU elections. What does that tell you?

    As far as general elections, we campaign and vote for what we are told is a Eurosceptic Party, and yet with 315 allegedly Eurosceptic MP’s in the House of Commons we are getting ever closer Union.

    You can say that Labour will vote for a pro-EU agenda. So be it.

    Let Labour knock down pro-British stances in the House. We’ll feel a lot better (and so should the conscience of the Conservative Party) if you at least stand and fight. This craven submission time after time only damages the Party’s credibility.

  15. Deborah
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    The problem is, before the election we were all assured that David Cameron understood and agreed with the electorate’s disenchantment with Europe. Many respected Tory Eurosceptics reassured us that he was basically sound and deserved our vote. It seems we have all been led up the garden path.

    The coalition is being used as an excuse for not dealing with the EU, as promised; but really it is down to Cameron’s lack of will.

    Am I disappointed? No, I am very angry that I was misled.

  16. Nick
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

    So basically you’ve failed and continue to support an non-democratic institution.

    More and more people realise that all politicians (apparently all bankers are to blame so the case is made) are sticking two fingers up at the electorate and are looting the treasury, running up vast public debts. They will then walk away, write a book, and go on the lecture trail raking in the cash.

    The problem is that people like myself are doing various things. We’re not playing the game. I make it difficult for the state where possible. If I see a policeman break the law, I’ll put in a complaint, record everything, and push it to the IPCC (allegation cut out). Same with every parking ticket. At a certain point the state is going to realise that so many people are doing this that its losing. With too many you can’t use the usual threats of force.

    After all, with debts now being but at 6.9 trillion, the Uk government can’t afford to pay that off. You can try force and turn people into slaves, but those that make the cash will walk.
    That means those that are left will be destitute.

    The US is an indication of where its going.

    By not changing it you are effectively accepting what’s going to happen. People are going to destitute in the millions because the money’s run out, and you’ve planned it. After all, your a politician and according to the logic, you must all be to blame.

  17. alan jutson
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    John

    No problems with your mathematics, but perhaps if wavey Dave had been a bit more Euro Sceptic, you may by now have had a larger majority of the vote, and not be in Coalition.

    This pro Europe stance by your Party may well cost your lot the next election by default, if people refuse to vote for any Party that is pro Europe.

    UKIP is the only Party which SEEM to be Eurosceptic, but they have no hope of gaining power in Westminster. So I suppose its a wait for the Euro Elections again to vote in protest.

    In the meantime keep spreading the message with sound arguments. One day the penny will drop for those who at present refuse to listen.

  18. StevenL
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    Why not organise a protest in Brussels for all your readers? The beers is very good there, it’d be fun 🙂

  19. sjb
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

    If Parliament does not represent what you contend is a Eurosceptic electorate then has this given you pause for thought about your position on proportional representation (“PR”)?

    I am not a UKIP supporter, but it does seem unfair that in the year before a general election they poll 16% or so (in the European elections) but come the general election about three quarters of those supporters switch to the Conservative Party.

  20. Matt C.
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    Obviously you’re right, John, the majority of MPs winning seats in the UK’s regional assembly last May are completly pro-EU, and that includes Cameron and his Tories. I am glad to say I wasn’t fooled for a second, by his lies.

    I would however disagree with the implication of your comment “once again a Eurosceptic country (according to issue polls) had voted for a Pro EU Parliament”.

    The last General Election result does not, in my opinion, reflect the will of the people on the EU. Rather it reflects the will of the political elite, via their candidate selection?

    I would be surprised if there were enough genuine eurosceptics – of the 1893 candidates representing the main three parties – to form any kind of majority.

    Whilst it’s easy to blame UKIP for stealing potential Conservative votes, I think it is also a little unfair since we know single issue parties rarely fare well in elections, neither does their poor showing indicate a fall in the number of eurosceptic voters in this country. Let’s face it, there is a vast number of people who would blindly vote red, yellow or blue regardless of whether it was a person or a turnip wearing the right coloured rosette.

    Out of interest, how many of the 631 Conservative candidates standing in the last election were actually, and genuinely, eurosceptic?
    How many of the 325 who did not win their seats were?

    and finally, perhaps a question you can’t answer…

    How many of these openly eurosceptic candidates were selected to contest a seat they couldn’t (or would be highly unlikely to) win? At least that way the reported numbers of eurosceptic candidates could survive inspection/criticism…

  21. Eric Arthur Blair
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

    I see what you’re doing there, John.

    How could a potential Conservative voter help if, for example, a local Conservative association has chosen a… Joanne Cash?

    Friend of one David Cameron, wasn’t she? Isn’t she all very inner circle?

    Did you see her election leaflet? Not a mention of Europe, sovereignty, referendum, treason laws, Cast Iron… that kinda thing.

    It did look like an advert for The Gentle Greenpeace Society and, if you remember, at the last election, Dave’s Europhile leftists were marketing the party as a “be nice to polar bears and daisies” party.

    How would you like the voters to help?

  22. electro-kevin
    Posted November 2, 2010 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

    Pro EU or not – it is treacherous for Parliamentarians to deny their people a referendum on this most crucial of issues.

    If we have this and the people say no then we sceptics will shut up about it.

  23. A Wills
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 1:11 am | Permalink

    This is why we need open primaries to make sure our representatives actually represent the views of their
    constituents.

  24. HK
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 1:36 am | Permalink

    I have sympathy for the “what are you still doing in the Conservatives?” posters on your blog, and I don’t think that blaming voters is the right answer.

    If the Conservatives’ EU policy had been more in line with your own (JR) then I think it very likely that the Conservatives would have had that majority. The voters who withheld their votes out of frustration with that EU policy (as they were perfectly entitled to do) and the voters who voted UKIP were a significant swing factor. (I suspect that people withholding votes was far more influential than people realise: it is much harder to quantify a non-vote, while the UKIP vote can be plainly seen.)

    Having said all that, can I suggest a reason why JR, Roger Helmer, Dan Hannan, etc, are justified in staying with the Conservatives: because they are in tune with their actual voters.

    The overwhelming majority of Conservative voters are EU-sceptic. The majority of Conservative MPs and MEPs are EU-sceptic. EU-sceptic MPs are no longer rebels: they are the mainstream.

    Regrettably the Conservatives leadership (including William Hague, a great shame) do not seem to reflect that. But it would help nobody if EU-sceptic politicians throw their hands up in the air and give up at the moment they are best able to set the direction.

    One near-final comment: on the “there is no majority in the Commons to do many of the things bloggers would like us to do” argument. Equally, the provisions of the Lisbon Treaty, and the EU in general, has no legitimacy in the UK. Therefore enthusiastically implementing the Lisbon Treaty (EU investigation order, among other things) is truly bizarre behaviour.

    A final comment: it is highly likely that UKIP, if it can keep itself together, will be the largest UK party in the EU parliamentary elections in 2014. Certainly the Conservatives don’t (on current EU form) deserve to maintain that position.

  25. Phillip Youle
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Just how did you expect the electorate to return a Eurosceptic Majority may I ask, with all three major parties having a pro-Europe stance? Did you just want us to return only those Conservative Candidates which are Eurosceptic to achieve this?

    Seems to me you need to club together with Daniel Hannan and the other 42 M.P’s and start your own Party, then you would see just how many people think that getting out of Europe is of paramount importance. Quite frankly, there has never been a better time than now to do it, before Cast Iron has a chance to claim another sucess which costs us a further 450 million!

  26. electro-kevin
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    As you know, many of us voted Tory whilst holding our noses for the sake of our economy. I now bitterly regret that I voted at all.

    Had Mr Cameron made it clear that he would support (or not resist very much) things such as: the EU budget being increased during times of austerity, our armed forces coming under French rule, prisoners being allowed to vote on things such as the age of consent or penal reform, further interferance in the regulation of small businesses, the prospect of taxation without representation …

    …do you think he would have got nearly enough votes to form even a coalition ? Those who resisted voting Tory should be proud of themselves. They read the situation well. And you confirm here that in partaking in a British election one is at risk of helping to secure a Pro EU mandate unwittingly – and that is what I feel I have done.

    The system is rigged as such. Which ever way one acts one gets a pro EU result. This is how the EU works its tentacles into every crevace – by stealth, deception and its most powerful tool which is to bore everyone into submission.

    To shift blame on to us is a tad unfair.

    If you think (as I do) we’ve been decieved by this government then you can always resign.

    If you don’t and you find yourself in a government which is taking us in a direction which strains every part of your conscience then you can always resign.

    Of course, you may stay and have your say so long as you don’t kick up too much of a fuss about it. You’re allowed to do that and it helps keep up the guise of a democratic process – so long as you pose no real risk of derailing the project.

    Reply: I have got exactly what I feared and warned about before the election – another pro EU Parliament.

  27. Eastern Conservative
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Your post here has really irritated me and has changed my opinion of you.

    I am a very loyal Conservative. A lifelong voter, supporter and activist. Many years of leafletting, canvassing, running committee rooms, organising and attending fundraisers. Much of my own money into party coffers.

    I am a branch chairman and a local councillor at multiple levels. I am an executive officer in my local organisation and have been its chairman in the past.

    I am not trying to blow my own trumpet. Im just like many others. Just like many others I’ve had enough.

    Come the next election, no matter how much I love this party (and I DO) I am left with no choice. I will be voting UKIP.

    Well done. You and the rest of your feeble colleagues have finally managed to rip out my political soul.

  28. Iain Gill
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    we need to fix the way candidates are selected, especially in safe seats, and not just in conservative safe seats but also labour safe seats

    voters in safe seats need to be given more choice from within the spectrum they are likely to support

    current system does not work

  29. Duyfken
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    For what it may be worth, here is an extract of a message I sent last week to my local (Tory) MP:

    “It is therefore with much regret my advising you now of my lack of confidence in the present leadership of the Conservative Party and I should be obliged if you would consider my reason for this and indeed pass on my comments please to others within the Party’s hierarchy.

    “As one who believes that the EU is, has become, or at all times has been a disaster to UK interests, I have many times doubted the attitude and level of determination shown by Mr Cameron in countering the ever-pressing encroachment on our sovereignty. As disappointing also is the way that Mr Hague has slid from a stand of strong resistance to become the present soft apologist for the PM’s lack of commitment. I find the actions or inaction by both to be deeply disappointing and I would go so far as to describe such as loathsome.

    “The latest episode this week in Brussels has finally convinced me that it is no longer feasible for me to lend support to the Conservative Party under the present leadership. Equally, I also conclude that the form of appeasement followed by successive UK governments in dealings with the EU will never halt, let alone haul back on the way British interests are being sacrificed in the name of European unity.

    “And why do we need European unity?

    “Now is the time, the latest, for a proper stand to be made against the EU, and the situation is in my opinion such that only complete withdrawal from the EU will be sufficient to staunch the creeping incoming federalist (and socialist) tide. I had not that extreme view prior to this week’s debacle, but Mr Cameron’s weak performance (and incredibly his boasting of success) has tipped me into belief that this is the only answer.

    “You have always been a loyal Tory MP with nary a word outspoken to question the leadership; now I urge you to decide whether you agree with the sentiments expressed above and if so, as I hope, what should be done about it.”

    No answer yet, but my MP is polite and diligent and will surely respond, albeit, I expect, in anodyne terms.

  30. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    With a system more like PR, your parliament would have better reflected British opinion. With the current discrepancy, obviously voters will get increasingly angry and frustrated, because they feel so powerless.

    National electoral reform should be high on a eurosceptic agenda.

  31. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    The reality is that the English are faced with three main political parties which are all under foreign control, and which between them succeeded in installing their (almost entirely) docile lobby fodder candidates in all but one of the parliamentary constituencies in England.

    There is a little more choice in other parts of the UK, but not much, and anyway with 82% of the seats England is the key to control of the House of Commons.

    Note that I don’t say “under EU control”, because it’s more complex than that: for example Cameron is clearly more subservient to Merkel as German Chancellor than he is to Barroso as President of the EU Commission, and his subservience to Merkel must be reconciled with the perceived need for subservience to the US President.

    I don’t think that any of these three parties can now be released from foreign control, because there are no effective internal or external mechanisms for doing that.

    Reply: These three parties attract most of the votes, so the majority of the public do not agree with you or don’t mind if they do. At every election people stand on an anti EU platform, and at every General Election they lose by a large margin. In an EU election they might come a poor second.

  32. Bert Rodinsky
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    You’re not really much use then are you?

  33. Cliff
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    John,
    I was thinking last night about the new agreement between Messers Cameron and Sarcozy to pool military assetts.
    I honestly feel that we could see demonstarations on our streets just like those seen in France. I have always believed that our Westminster government would not use our troops to impose order on our streets against our own citizens; am I being paranoid to believe that French troops could be used on our streets to subdue any trouble here and that British troops could be used for the same purpose in mainland France?

    I have also noticed and not for the first time, that you very seldom answer any questions raised by contributors regarding the negative side of the EUSSR especially if it goes against the party leadership’s view; is this a fair observation?

    Obviously this question’s implications do not apply to you or Mr Davis due to your age but, do you feel that younger, ambitious Conservative(sic) MPs will not rock the boat because their future promotion and career paths rely on the support/benevolence of the Presidential style party leader?

    Reply: It is not my job to offer apologia for the EU. I set out my views on how I want to change it, and then tell you why it is not possible to change it as many of you would like owing to the configuration of current UK politics.

  34. Norman Dee
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    You do not seem to be coming out of these discussions well, you could as you failed to do in the headline statement show some remorse for your lack of power but you choose not to. David Cameron has just been quite explicit about his anger at having to GiIVE prisoners the vote, when can we see some anger at the things we have had TAKEN away.

  35. David Wickes
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    A Wills has hit the nail on the head – without a mechanism for the electorate to determine the exact sort of Conservative/Lib Dem/Labour candidate that they will (almost inevitably, given the current system) elect, there is a dislocation between constituency and MP. The MP will always have more to gain by voting with their party rather than representing their constituents.

    Whatever you think of the Tea Party in the US, it is a product of having open primaries. No primaries, no Tea Party – and no possibility of the electorate being able to make a genuine choice about who represents their constituency. I believe that primary elections in this country would force matters such as EU membership to be addressed by prospective candidates, and then decided by the electorate.

    Where do you stand on this matter, Mr. Redwood?

  36. Winston's Black Dog
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    My Conservative candidate stood for Labour in the 2005 election!

    He is a rabid Europhile in the Ken Clarke / David Cameron mould.

    Your shrill bleating and laying the blame at UKIP’s door for the pro EU Parliament we now suffer really does not become the man I admired for his courageous defiance of Major over Masstricht all those years ago.

    You should be looking to your own party and colleagues cynically overruling local constituencies to get the supine blend of MPs to endorse the closet LIB DEM Cameron’s Europhile agenda.

    You appear to be a man of principle with pride in his country. How long can you hold your nose and support traitors like Cameron?

  37. Winston's Black Dog
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

    …..”I set out after the Election that once again a Eurosceptic country (according to issue polls) had voted for a Pro EU Parliament. That means there is no majoritry in the Commons to do many of the things bloggers would like us to do.”……

    Does this imply that you are going to do nothing?

  38. Andrew Johnson
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    Dear John, it’s not very nice when the messenger gets shot is it?
    You must be very depressed by contributor’s attacks on those who are Eurosceptic (I prefer the term Eurorealist) for not doing what they so desperately want. You will know that those who are angry often lash out against the person closest to them. Thank you for this blog, which at your personal expense, provides a platform for Conservatives and others who are Eurorealists to vent their frustration and anger and provides a platform for your own often brilliant analysis of current events.
    It occurs to me, that rather than railing against those MP’s et al who are distinctly Eurorealist, perhaps we ought to be starting a national emailing campaign aimed at Mr. Cameron, Mr. Haig and those Conservative members of parliament who seem to be so pro-Europe to the detriment of Great Britain.
    I voted Conservative with severe reservations, to get rid of the damage that New Labour had inflicted on GB, but I will not vote Conservative again until, the party manifesto includes an unbreakable commitment to an in out referendum on Europe.
    I will be emailing Mr. Cameron and Mr. Haig and my local MP accordingly. Amyone want to start a Facebook campaign for an in out EU referendum?

    • Iain
      Posted November 4, 2010 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

      What is the point, our politicians will only rat on any promises they give us. We have had cast iron guarantees and look what came of that. Look at Cameron now, he said that he would give us a referendum if there is any loss of sovereignty, well we have had the loss of sovereignty with the EU Foreign Office, but surprise surprise, NOT, no referendum in sight. Cameron is more worried about giving us a referendum than giving the EU £450 million, he is going to bend over backwards to deny us a say on the EU, any cobbled together dodgy deal dreamt up by the EU to give Germany its new treaty amendment and no referendum for us will be fine by him.

      The only way to get our referendum on the EU is to vote them LibLabCon, the lot of them, out of office.

  39. Derek Buxton
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    I must say that you many replies stating that it is the voters fault are becoming insults, it is not our fault. You know full well that Cameron hand picked almost all candidates, his own EU loving candidates. To add to this he refused point blank to engage with the electorate, even to the extent of ignoring any challenge from local party groups. Now after the event he is showing what many of us regarded as his true face, EU lover par excellence. The only inference to be drawn therefore is that he hates our Country and People. That is a disgrace in any MP, although there seem to be any number of them but in the Prime Minister?
    Being old fashioned I believe that an Oath once taken should be adhered to as closely as possible, we humans being fallible, but he fails on all counts, and him a Privy Councillor.

  40. John Whitehead
    Posted November 3, 2010 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Further to Patrick Wood’s comment much earlier in these comments: if UKIP would only stand in European Elections and finally recognise they split the Eurosceptic Westminster vote and therefore not stand in General Elections then things would be a lot clearer. For example, where I live in East Anglia it is almost entirely blue Conservative at the GE (every square inch of Suffolk!). If it was then also almost entirely UKIP at the European level then it would be quite clear that East Anglia was both Conservative AND Eurosceptic. East Anglian Westminster MPs could then defy the likes of Cameron on EU matters by clear reference to the will of their constituents.

  41. Francis Irving
    Posted November 4, 2010 at 1:49 am | Permalink

    Eurosceptics could also consider voting for AV in the referendum.

    Then they could rank UKIP first, Tory second. And at no risk show their euroscepticism, and likely get more MPs they like.

  42. pipesmoker
    Posted November 4, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    I admire your sincerity and were it not for your stance on this country’s membership of the EU I have no doubt you would be on the front bench.

    Maybe one day you just need to remind the Lib Dems that they were all for a referendum on our membership, for which they would fight their corner, in the run up to the Lisbon Treaty aka constitution.

  43. Paul H
    Posted November 5, 2010 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    So when are you going to stand up in the HofC and – ignoring any petty rules designed to protect the guilty – tell your leader that he is a liar?
    Thought not.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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