"We will put it to the British people in a referendum and campaign wholeheartedly for a Yes vote."He was also forced to renege on the following 24 June 2007 statement, which he made in a BBC interview with Jon Sopel:
"The manifesto is what we put to the public. We've got to honour that manifesto. That is an issue of trust with me and the electorate."Interestingly, he was bold enough to do the reneging within THE VERY SAME INTERVIEW! This was how he put an entirely opposite case:
"THIS IS NOT A NEW CONSTITUTION, IT'S AN AMENDING TREATY… THE ISSUES THAT WE WERE WORRIED ABOUT HAVE BEEN DEALT WITH… THE PUBLIC WOULD NOT… EXPECT THERE TO BE A REFERENDUM… NO OTHER COUNTRY… NOW THINKS IT'S NECESSARY TO HAVE A REFERENDUM.It wasn't just Brown, all the New Labour luvvies were at it. On-message Europe Minister, Jim Murphy, said this:
WHEN IT CAME TO MAASTRICHT WHEN THE CONSERVATIVES WERE IN POWER, THEY DIDN'T HAVE A REFERENDUM."
"THE REFORM TREATY IS SIGNIFICANTLY DIFFERENT TO THE OLD CONSTITUTIONAL TREATY IN INTENT, FORM AND SUBSTANCE."On-message Leader in the European Parliament, Gary Titley said this:
"IT'S A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WHAT WAS PROPOSED IN THE CONSTITUTIONAL TREATY AND THE AMENDING TREATY."New Labour’s European Commissioner, and one of the original creators of the 90s version of the 'message,' Peter Mandelson, said this:
"IT IS NOT A RADICAL REFORM. IT'S NOT A CONSTITUTION."However, on 9 October 2007, the BBC reported thus:
"The EU treaty is 'substantially equivalent' to the EU Constitution thrown out by Dutch and French voters in 2005, MPs have said. The European scrutiny committee said it should be 'made clear' the UK can keep opt-outs of parts of the document. The Conservatives said the government was now 'morally bound' to hold a referendum on the treaty, as had been promised on the constitution.In the same article, the Conservatives’ Europe spokesman, Mark Francois, said this:
The committee criticised the 'essentially secret' drafting of the document, which is due to be signed by EU heads of government in Portugal after an Intergovernmental Committee later this month…
The report said: ‘The compressed timetable now proposed, having regard to the sitting terms of national parliaments, could not have been better designed to marginalise their role’… And it warned that the UK's 'red lines' may not prove effective…
They added: ‘In our view, the imposition of such a legal duty on the Parliament of this country is objectionable as a matter of principle and must be resisted.’
The report also said: ‘What matters is whether the new treaty produces an effect which is substantially equivalent to the constitutional treaty. We consider that, for those countries which have not requested derogations or opt-outs from the full range of agreements in the treaty, IT DOES".
"It is now crystal clear that the two documents are essentially the same and therefore Gordon Brown is morally bound to offer the people of the country the referendum he promised them."On 12 October 2007, The Daily Mail said:
"After talks with European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso in Downing Street, Mr Brown suggested he was close to victory - and again ruled out a referendum."However, The Mail went on to say:
"Gordon Brown is facing fresh pressure over the revived EU constitution after a Labour-dominated committee of MPs warned that the latest draft was even worse for Britain."Michael Connarty, chairman of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee, (and a New Labour MP) wrote to Foreign Secretary David Miliband protesting that the Government's 'red lines' appeared to be unravelling. He warned that Brussels was plotting to start meddling in the UK's criminal justice system after five years, despite repeated Government claims that it was totally protected from EU interference. The Labour MP, whose committee has pored over every line of the new 'Reform Treaty', claimed Britain would be forced to pay massive fines if it refused to cooperate.
Gisela Stuart, New Labour MP for Birmingham Edgbaston, (she is German) played a key role in drawing up the original EU constitution. Describing Brown’s 'no referendum' stance as a 'cop-out from a specific promise made to voters,' she said this in The Evening Standard:
"The path adopted by the Government is neither honest nor coherent. We have reached the absurd position where the Government says there will be a referendum only if its red lines are not met, so presumably it will ask people to vote ‘no’ on a treaty it has not signed. The red lines are red herrings. It’s a matter of trust and integrity. A referendum was promised. It should be delivered.Most of the following quotations demonstrate that the latest EU treaty is the previously sin-binned EU Constitution in all but name.
If Labour can’t trust the people, why should the people trust Labour?"
Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, former French President and principal author of the original Constitution - The Daily Telegraph - 27 June 2007:
"This text is in fact a return to the original Constitutional Treaty."D’Estaing had previously been quoted thus in Le Monde - 14 June 2007:
"The last ingenuity in wanting to preserve parts of the Constitutional Treaty was to camouflage them then bring them about under short sharp bursts hidden beneath many texts. The provisions more 'innovating' would become the subject of simple amendments to the treaties of Maastricht and Nice. The technical improvements will be regrouped in a colourless and painless Treaty. The ensemble of these texts will be addressed directly to Parliaments and would then be decided by separate votes. Thus Public Opinion would be led to accept, without knowing it, the provisions which one does not dare to present to the public in a direct manner."Romano Prodi, President of the Italian Council and former President of the EU - La Repubblica - 24 June 2007.
"In regard to our conditions, I highlight three "red lines" in respect of the text of the Constitution: to keep a permanent European President, he alone to be responsible for Foreign Affairs and a common Diplomatic Service; to preserve the extension of the majority vote and a unique Juridical personality for the Union. These three elements have been preserved."Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany - The Daily Telegraph - 29 June 2007.
"The substance of the Constitution is maintained. This is a fact."Jose Luis Zapatero, Prime Minister of Spain - 27 July 2007.
"We have not abandoned any essential point of the Constitution. It is without doubt better than a Treaty. It’s a project which has a founding character, a Treaty for a New Europe."Bertie Ahern, Irish Prime Minister - Irish Independent - 24 June 2007.
"90 [er cent of the constitution remains.... the changes have brought absolutely no spectacular modification to the 2004 accord."Giuliano Amato, former President to the Italian Council and former Vice President to the Convention on the Future of Europe - 12 July 2007.
"It has been decided that the document has to be illegible. If it is illegible this is not Constitutional; this is the idea… If you can instantly understand the text then you risk calls for a referendum.Guy Verhofstadt, Prime Minister of Belgium - Agence Europe - 24 June 2007.
All law is constructed to be intelligible to the average Joe – this so that those in charge have a permanent head start over those they are in charge of."
"The New Treaty takes on the most important elements of the Constitutional treaty."Margot Wallstrom, Swedish Europena Commissioner - 26 June 2007.
"It’s essentially the same propositions as that of the old Constitution."Karel de Gucht, Belgian Minister for Foreign Affairs - Flanders Information - June 23, 2007.
"The goal of the Constitutional Treaty was to be legible. The goal of this Treaty is to be illegible. The Constitutional Treaty was clear whereas this new Treaty is obscure. It is a success."Jean-Claude Juncker, Prime Minister of Luxembourg - Agence Europe - 24 June 2007.
"From our point of view the substance has been preserved."And The Telegraph - 3 July 2007:
"Of course there will be a transfer of sovereignty but would I be intelligent to draw the public attention to this fact?"Vaclav Klaus, President of the Czech Republic - The Guardian - 13 June 2007:
"The changements have purely been cosmetic and the base document stays the same."Astrid Thors, Finnish Minister for the European Affairs - TV-Nytt - 23 June 2007.
"No original Institutional changes have been made."Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Danish Prime Minister - Jyllands-Posten - 25 June 2007.
"What is positive is… symbolic elements have been removed and that of real importance, the heart, remains."Jean-Louis Bourlanges, former member of the Convention for the Future of Europe and Deputy MEP - France Culture - 24 June 2007.
"All the Constitution is there! Nothing is missing!"Janez Jansa, Prime Minister of Slovenia.
"With this new Treaty the EU preserves content which is not essentially different from that of the Constitutional Treaty. All the important institutional solutions stay. Certain symbolic elements have been wiped away and certain formulations have been weakened."On 11 July 2007, Rapport Leinen quoted the European Parliament as having offered its 'congratulations' because:
"The substance of the Constitutional Treaty mandate has been preserved for the most part."Austrian Parliament - 25 June 2007.
"The Treaty for a Constitution has been preserved in substance."Press communiqué - Office of the President of Lithuania.
"Lithuania has fulfilled 100% the objectives that she had to comply with, before joining the Union, and which were essential in maintaining the Constitutional treaty."Gérard Onesta, Green MEP - 25 June 2007.
"It’s incredible how everything has been swept under the carpet."How much of the above would coincide with the following Brownspeak, do we think?
"THIS IS NOT A NEW CONSTITUTION, IT'S AN AMENDING TREATY."
"THE REFORM TREATY IS SIGNIFICANTLY DIFFERENT TO THE OLD CONSTITUTIONAL TREATY."
"IT'S A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WHAT WAS PROPOSED IN THE CONSTITUTIONAL TREATY AND THE AMENDING TREATY."
"IT IS NOT A RADICAL REFORM. IT'S NOT A CONSTITUTION."Oh THEY lie, ladies and gentlemen. THEY really do take the p*** out of us something chronic. The really remarkable thing, as far as I’m concerned, is the fact that we keep falling for it.
Over and over again.
The European quotations cited above were taken from THIS ARTICLE. It was brought to my attention and the quotations therein translated into English by Godiva.