Predictably Britain’s right-wing newspapers – the Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mail – have reported favourably on the Tory-led coalition’s idea that Britain can take powers back to itself from the European Union. Indeed, we are told that Foreign Secretary Hague is actively working on this, drawing up a list of demands for powers to be repatriated.
Yes, there may well be a change to the Lisbon Treaty in the not too distant future to help deal with the problems in the eurozone. However, this change regarding the eurozone is exactly that – a treaty change with a very specific aim. Just because there may be some change to the treaty relating to the euro does not mean that the UK government will get any amendments allowing Britain to “repatriate EU powers back to Britain” as the Tories like to call what they are trying to do.
Either William Hague, David Cameron et al are very stupid and don’t understand the EU or they are perpetrating a massive fraud on the British people. Either way it is bad for the coalition. I am absolutely sure this shenanigans will come back to haunt them in the form of Tory Eurosceptics becoming even more incandescent with frustrated rage and/or the British electorate realising that the Tory promise to take back powers from Europe is a huge scam.
Changes to any EU treaty need agreement from all 27 member states. This means that measures relating to the euro will be difficult enough to get through. The notion that the UK may try to withhold its agreement to the euro measures until it gets promises regarding the repatriation of powers, will not go down at all well with other member states, especially since the UK is not in the euro. Indeed, the Daily Telegraph has reported that handing powers back toBritainwill be fiercely resisted by Germany, France, the eurozone and most EU countries -hardly a recipe for success.
The Tory promise to “take back powers from the EU” is smoke and mirrors writ large. The British government quite simply does not have control over the EU in the way the Tories are trying to convince us that they have. The Tory-led coalition is just not able to do what it is promising, clearly showing that this is a government which cannot be trusted.