12-applying-these-principles
11 Pages
English
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12-applying-these-principles

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11 Pages
English

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L. Enhancing Other Jurisdictions a. European Union 1. UK Relationships with the European Union Although there are differences in detail, the Jury Team Principles can also be applied to the institutions and organisation of the European Union and of local Government. The relation of the UK to EU (formerly EEC) has been a central feature of UK politics for fifty years but its various enhancements have generally not received particularly strong parliamentary support: - The Bill to join the EEC passed its Third Reading in the House of Commons in July 1972 by only 301 to 284 (16 Conservatives voted against and four abstained and there were 13 Labour abstentions). - For the Single European Act 1986 there was a Government three-line Whip and a ‘guillotine’. - At Second Reading on the Maastricht Treaty, the European Communities (Amendment) Bill, in May 1992, 22 Conservative MPs defied the Whip and voted against. - For the Treaty of Amsterdam in late 1997 there was an Opposition three-line whip and only one MP, Edward Heath, defied the party whip by abstaining. - For the vote on the Treaty of Nice in 2004 there was an Opposition and a Government three-line whip and the Government won with a large majority even though 100 Labour MPs did not even attend. 2. Referendums on the EU The parties have taken varying positions on having a referendum on Europe. Enoch Powell and Neil Marten put down an amendment calling for a referendum on ...

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L. Enhancing Other Jurisdictions a. European Union 1. UK Relationships with the European Union Although there are differences in detail, the Jury Team Principles can also be applied to the institutions and organisation of the European Union and of local Government. The relation of the UK to EU (formerly EEC) has been a central feature of UK politics for fifty years but its various enhancements have generally not received particularly strong parliamentary support: - The Bill to join the EEC passed its Third Reading in the House of Commons in July 1972 by only 301 to 284 (16 Conservatives voted against and four abstained and there were 13 Labour abstentions). - For the Single European Act 1986 there was a Government three-line Whip and a ‘guillotine’. - At Second Reading on the Maastricht Treaty, the European Communities (Amendment) Bill, in May 1992, 22 Conservative MPs defied the Whip and voted against. - For the Treaty of Amsterdam in late 1997 there was an Opposition three-line whip and only one MP, Edward Heath, defied the party whip by abstaining. - For the vote on the Treaty of Nice in 2004 there was an Opposition and a Government three- line whip and the Government won with a large majority even though 100 Labour MPs did not even attend. 2. Referendums on the EU The parties have taken varying positions on having a referendum on Europe. Enoch Powell and Neil Marten put down an amendment calling for a referendum on entry to the EEC in 1972. This was pursued in March 1972 by Tony Benn who took it to the National Executive where it became official Labour policy in April 1972. Labour in opposition also voted in favour of a referendum on the Maastricht Treaty but in Government they were against referendums on the Amsterdam and Nice Treaties. The Conservative leadership were against a referendum on UK membership of the EEC in 1972 and also against a referendum on the Single European Act and Maastricht Treaties although in the Maastricht vote in April 1993, 72 Conservatives voted for a referendum. In June 1997 the Leader of the Conservatives, William Hague, made a call for a referendum on the Amsterdam Treaty at the Scottish Conservative Conference but had reversed his position by October when the matter was debated in the Commons. The Liberal Democrats were divided over a referendum on Maastricht in 1993 when twelve of their MPs supported a referendum while four were against. They were against referendums on the Amsterdam and Nice Treaties. Under pressure before the European Parliament election in 2004 Tony Blair suddenly promised a referendum on the new EU Constitution, which was supported by the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, but he then decided against a referendum on its somewhat modified version the Lisbon Treaty. Voters did not take kindly to such a change in commitment and a poll found 83% of Britons favoured a referendum, especially as some other EU countries intended to put the constitution before their voters. The Conservatives have since called for a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty and have said that they will hold one if they return to power before the Treaty is ratified by all the other countries and have hinted that they might do so even if it has been ratified. The Liberal Democrats have been split again over the Lisbon Treaty. It is however very clear that people across Europe wanted to have a referendum on the new EU Constitution/Lisbon Treaty. A 2007 poll published by the think-tank Open Europe across all 27 countries showed the following response to the question: “If a new treaty is drawn up which gives ? more powers to the EU do you think that people should be given a say on this in a referendum or citizen consultation or do you think that it should just be up to the national Parliament to ratify this treaty?”. An average of 75% were in favour of having a referendum, with 83% in the UK: Yes to No to Don’t referendum Referendum Know Ireland 87% 11% 1% Greece 83% 14% 3% UK 83% 15% 3% Czech Republic 82% 15% 3% France 81% 16% 3% Latvia 80% 11% 10% Malta 77% 17% 6% Germany77% 23% 1% Cyprus 76% 21% 3% Estoni74% 16% 11% Poland 74% 16% 10% Luxemburg 74% 23% 3% Denmark 73% 22% 4% Spain 73% 24% 3% Belgium 73% 25% 2% Finland 72% 25% 3% Bulgaria 71% 13% 16% Austria 71% 25% 4% Italy 70% 23% 8% Sweden 68% 30% 2% Lithuania 67% 15% 18% Romani66% 11% 23% Hungary 66% 30% 4% Slovakia64% 20% 16% Portugal64% 21% 15% Netherlands 62% 29% 9% Slovenia 55% 40% 4% Total 75% 20% 5% Another example of ambivalence was David Cameron’s statement in December 2005 that he wanted to withdraw the Conservative MEPs from the European People's Party - European Democrats group of the European Parliament. Kenneth Clarke described this as a “head-banging” policy. A majority of Tory MEPs also oppose David Cameron’s stance. In February 2006 The Times reported: "The Tory leader has been told that senior figures such as Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, and Silvio Berlusconi, the Italian Prime Minister, are threatening to cut bilateral relations. In all 11 leaders of right-wing governments and parties have said that they will refuse to work with Mr Cameron if he withdraws Tory MEPs from the European People’s Party grouping in the European Parliament. The list includes Nicolas Sarkozy, the French Interior Minister and likely presidential candidate, and Mariano Rasjoy, the head of the opposition Spanish Popular Party." 3. The Effect of the UK’s Unclear Relationship with the EU The UK’s party political prevarication on the EU over forty years has weakened our dealings with continental Europe. Countries such as Switzerland and Norway that have stayed outside the EU have prospered. Similarly others such as Ireland and Portugal which have embraced it have also done well. The constant policy turns by the UK have however meant that neither have our best people sought election to the European Parliament nor has our Government machine given it a high priority by ensuring that our most able officials are seconded to Brussels and given every help in securing senior positions in the EU management structures. Our last four appointments as a UK Commissioner have been: Neil Kinnock: former Labour Party leader appointed in 1995 who had to resign with the rest of the Commission over fraud charges in 1999, returning to serve until 2004