The Prime Minister is, we're told, coming round to the idea that there needs to be a referendum on the EU. Good.
If you stop and think about it, it'd be surprising if he wasn't.
A large chunk of the Cabinet, and most Conservative backbenchers, want one. The voters are four to one in favour. Along with the two other parties, under his leadership, we promised one before the last election.
Plus, of course, there's the small matter of the rest of Europe fusing into a fiscal-monetary core (Good luck with that, by the way, guys).
It is obvious that if the PM does offer us a referendum, then of course it cannot possibly a choice between a) staying in or b) staying in on different terms. That would be absurd.
Downing Street staffers are not daft, and if they gave this impression they must have mis-spoke.
After forty years of denying the people a say, for ministers and mandarins to then say the voters could have a choice – but between two versions of "in" - would lack credibility outside SW1. Three or four years ago, it might have stood up, but if it was announced as our position now it would pretty soon look and feel absurd.
Any vote will have to be a binary choice between a) membership on different terms or b) no more membership.
I am sure that those at the top understand this. I reckon even Homer would understand it.blog comments powered by Disqus
"A revolutionary text ... right up there with the Communist manifesto" - Dominic Lawson, Sunday Times