by Stephen Tall on August 29, 2007
There’s speculation in today’s Telegraph that the Lib Dems might back calls from the Tories, and from some 120 Labour rebels, for a referendum on the European Union reform treaty:
Sir Menzies Campbell, the Lib Dem leader, refused yesterday to rule out backing a referendum before a Commons scrutiny of the treaty proposals. Even though he said his personal view was that it was not necessary this time, he added: “I don’t think you can make a final decision on that until we see what the final document looks like.”
A senior party source later disclosed that younger Lib Dem MPs have privately urged Sir Menzies to abandon the party’s traditionally pro-EU stance and stop “taking the flak” for defending Brussels. The move reflects mounting concern that the Conservative Party under David Cameron would combine Eurosceptic policies with a broader appeal to unseat southern-based Lib Dem MPs at the next election.
What do you think? Should the Lib Dems support the demands for a referendum – after all, we were the only mainstream party to call for one to validate the Maastricht Treaty – or would this simply be pandering to a Eurosceptic media, exploiting issues too technical to be decided by a simple Yes/No vote?
A new poll is open – see the right-hand column – which poses just such a question… your chance to vote on whether we should have a vote.