The Irish have rejected the EU not-a-constitution by 53.4% to 46.6%.
Most constituencies rejected the not-a-constitution but there were some very close calls – one constituency had a majority “No” vote of only 132.
This will be a blow to Federal Europe because now they have to throw sufficient cash and thinly veiled threats at the Irish so they’ll vote “Yes” in the next referendum and because they’re going to have to try and figure out a way of justifying ignoring the “No” votes of three of the most pro-EU states without coming across as illiberal, undemocratic facists.
Überpropagandameister Merkel (pictured right) will be working overtime to try and spin something positive out of the third rejection of the EU Constitution whilst the French Secretary of State for European Affairs simply stated that the Lisbon Treaty will “overcome” a No vote from Ireland.
Emperor Barrosso says that member states should continue to ratify the EU not-a-constitution regardless of the fact that Ireland’s “No” vote is supposed to mean that it’s dead in the water whilst other eurofederalists are running round like headless chickens trying to think of ways they can implement it without Ireland’s consent or make it more palatable to the Irish for another referendum.
The old EU constitution has been rejected twice and the new EU constitution has been rejected once. The French and Dutch didn’t reject the way in which the contents of the EU constitution would be brought in, they rejected its contents. The Irish, too, have rejected the contents of the EU constitution in its new “not a constitution because it’s got a different name and delivers its payload different way” guise. The only real difference between the EU Constitution and the Lisbon Treaty is the way in which it delivers its payload – the EU Constitution would have replaced existing treaties with one new one and the Lisbon Treaty does exactly the same things the EU Constitution would have done but by amending existing treaties instead of replacing them. The payload is the same, the method of delivery is different.
It is wrong – very wrong – for Federal Europe to continue to press for the EU not-a-constitution to be ratified and it is equally wrong for the British government to claim that a referendum is no longer needed here because they’ve changed the way the EU constitution implements the changes contained within it.
The Irish Times has had excellent coverage of the proceedings all day, well worth a read.