after the Irish ‘no’ vote

posted by Kaihsu Tai on June 16th, 2008

(A message initiating discussion with fellow Green Party activist Dr Rupert Read:)

What do you think should/will happen after the Irish ‘no’ vote?

After the French and Dutch ‘no’ on the constitutional treaty, I thought they (the political élite) should drop ex-Part III (the neoliberal part) and demote the corresponding parts of the treaties into the acquis (which we can then work on/fight against with non-constitutional means, say in the European Parliament).

I suppose the corresponding thing now is to demote what would have become the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union into the acquis, and pass the Treaty on European Union (ex-Parts I and IV) plus the Charter of Fundamental Rights (ex-Part II).

I know that Daniel Cohn-Bendit wants a European Union-wide referendum: he said so at a speech in Oxford.

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  1. On June 16, 2008 at 13:23 Mike said:

    Crooked Timber post on this issue. I must admit I still don’t fully understand what’s going on here . . . .

  2. On June 18, 2008 at 10:06 Euro-Green said:

    The European Greens have long advocated an EU-wide referendum, whether on the Lisbon treaty, the constitution or a new ‘European Act for Democracy’ (which was advocated by one Green MEP, Johannes Voggenhuber). The problem with this is that it puts an immense onus on the political establishment to educate and inform its electorate about an immensely complicated international treaty. If this was impossible in Ireland, a country with a long history of referendums on often arcane matters, what hope is there for the majority of EU countries that have no such experience? Particularly in the context of an election campaign (the Greens want it on the same day as the European elections next year) when it will be swallowed up in local political issues. Referendums, whether European or national, are just too flawed. Unless all voters are compelled to attend some basic level of education on the subject on which they are voting, referendums are anti-democratic.

  3. On June 18, 2008 at 12:07 Kaihsu Tai said:

    Caroline Lucas MEP (Green): EU must save the Charter of Rights.

  4. On June 19, 2008 at 02:51 Adam Villani said:

    I’ve long been pretty disenchanted with the initiative-and-referendum process in California, too. Propositions often have effects or loopholes that aren’t publicized well, which is a big problem. The other problem is basically that really it’s the legislature’s job to make laws. When the legislature is reviewing a bill, they get to evaluate it more thoroughly, amending it or making compromises. When you see a proposition on the ballot as a voter, though, you only get to vote yes or no on it. No real debate, just take it or leave it.

    That being said, I’m not entirely opposed to the initiative process, but it should really be used sparingly where a simple yes or no answer on a well-publicized, simple issue is under consideration, like an independence vote.

  5. On June 19, 2008 at 12:45 Kaihsu Tai said:

    Monica Frassoni and Daniel Cohn-Bendit: Irish No to Lisbon Treaty: Black Friday for Europe.

  6. On June 30, 2008 at 11:15 Kaihsu Tai said:

    European Parliament (Wednesday, 18 June 2008 – Strasbourg): Preparation of the European Council following the Irish referendum (19/20 June 2008) (debate)

  7. On February 24, 2009 at 16:17 Kaihsu Tai said:

    Now you can talk about this at the European Citizens’ Consultation: debate; vote.