8 Oct 2009

Is there a Tory Plan B for Europe?

Very brief mention of Europe in Cameron’s speech but here’s what we’ve learnt this week.

The Poles named the day for signing the Lisbon Treaty today, the Czech prime minister said yesterday that the Czech signature would go down before Christmas.

The day is fast approaching when David Cameron will have to tell his party that the referendum here is cancelled. This week, comment sections in the Daily Mail and The Sun gave him the go-ahead to do just that. Most in his party will give him the credit to do that too.

He will then announce Plan B at some point and as things stand that will involve a major push to repatriate powers on social and employment law.

One prominent Europhile told me last night that he could live with that, and that “we hardly take much law from Europe” on this area (something some Euro sceptics would hotly contest).

Repatriating justice and home affairs powers are expected to be part of the same move. A referendum would be threatened to the rest of Europe … don’t let me open these discussions and I will consult the British people.

All very sticky potentially for relations with Europe but President Sarkozy for one is letting it be known that he is pretty relaxed about all this planned table-thumping and sure an incoming UK Tory government wouldn’t rock the boat too much.

Calm-ish for now then.

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