David Cameron: Democratic Blackmail?
The honest and straightforward option regarding Britain’s position in or out of the European Union would be an immediate Referendum to ask the British people if they want the United Kingdom to remain as member of the European Union.
Instead, both those who want an independent Britain and those who want to remain in the European Union have to deal with strong suspicions that indicate that they are being taken for a ride.
From the point of view of those who want Britain out of the European Union, David Cameron is playing for time and applying delaying tactics to then turn around and create a fait accompli.
UKIP’s recent electoral successes, some say, forced David Cameron to promise a Referendum even when in his heart of hearts he has no intention of delivering a Referendum.
If the renegotiation of the British position in the European Union fails and the Conservatives fail to win the next General Election, Labour would take over putting an end to any hopes of having a Referendum.
If the renegotiation efforts are successful, this would be used by the Conservative Party in the campaign towards a General Election to try and get ammunition for a Yes Vote and to actually win the next General Election.
From the point of view of those who want Britain to remain as a member of the European Union, David Cameron is gambling British membership to try and keep the Conservative Party together. Why? If the renegotiation fails, then some argue that this would ensure a NO Vote.
Rather than gambling Britain’s future, one way or another, we should have a Referendum now. Some Labour MPs indicate that having a Referendum now before any kind of renegotiation would be their favoured option. However, I suspect they only say it because they feel that the Conservatives are in trouble when facing UKIP.
What does UKIP say? Nigel Farage stated that David Cameron’s promise of having a Referendum on Europe if the Conservative’s win the election puts pressure on Labour since the official Labour Party’s position is against any Referendum on Europe. According to UKIP’s leader, UKIP would benefit by attracting disaffected Labour voters, regardless of the fact that in terms of economic policies UKIP is closer to Right Wing Conservatives.
The gamble is that facing the risk of losing Britain, Angela Merkel and others - including France - would surrender and accept a new deal put forward by Britain. Those who support this sort of Democratic Blackmail say that both Germany and France have a lot to lose if Britain leaves the European Union.
Germany and Britain have been the financial pillars of the European Union for many years and in the present circumstances Germany would not want to be forced to subsidize the entire European Union. There would soon be Elections in Germany and Angela Merkel could lose those elections if the German electorate is threatened with yet more bad financial news. Unlike the French, the German government was quick to react in a conciliatory manner after David Cameron's statement on the subject of a Referendum.