The previous President of the European Commission, Manuel Barroso, and the previous President of the European Council, Hermann van Rompuy, both told David Cameron when they were in office that the EU Treaties were not up for renegotiation. But Mr Cameron has persisted with his phoney promise to ‘renegotiate Britain’s terms of membership of the EU’.
It was entirely predictable that Mr Barroso’s successor Jean-Claude Juncker has just said the same thing; but the forcefulness of his rebuttal is stark. Mr Juncker has recently likened Britain’s involvement with the EU as a failed love-affair, he has said, “It is easy to fall in love and more difficult to stay together”.
Well in truth, Britain’s involvement with the EU is more like a 43 year-long, very unhappy, arranged marriage. The marriage was arranged by a wicked uncle, Ted Heath, and the bride has been trying to find a way out ever since.
Mr Juncker has said that the EU would reject, without debate, Cameron’s calls to change the EU Treaties to give nation states the power to stop large scale flows of migrants from the EU. He said, “When one mentions the end to of the free circulation of workers, there can be no debate, dialogue or compromise. We can fight against abuses but the EU won’t change the Treaties to satisfy the whim of certain politicians”.
Well there we have it. Mr Cameron can pretend all he likes to the British people that he can ‘renegotiate’ our terms of membership but the EU is never going to do anything that waters down is core reason for being – to create a borderless, European political state – a United States of Europe, in reality if not in name.
Mr Juncker also said that he ‘will not get down on his knees to beg Britain to stay’; and that that he is “against all forms of grovelling”. That’s a relief then. Britain is the one that has been grovelling for the last four decades and we can either live on our knees inside the European Union, or on our feet as an independent people outside of it – and the sooner the better.
This article originally appeared on Gerard Batten’s blog.
Photo by Fabio Penna