When European and national parties disagree

There is an interesting analysis at the Open Europe blog about how MEPs from a number of parties around Europe voted when their national leadership and the groups they are part of in the European parliament went in opposite directions.

It has already been noted that British Lib/Dem MEPs voted against the summit proposals to reduce EU budget limits. In the process they earned a severe public ticking-off from Nick Clegg when the Lib Dem leader praised Cameron's negotiating tactics and expressed disappointment that his MEPs voted with their European group against the proposed lower MFF budget ceiling and in favour of higher spending, a higher national contribution, and new taxes to fund the EU.

It is also interesting to note that UKIP's Kamikazi pilot vote against cutting the EU spending limits was not supported by the rest of the "Europe of Freedom and Democracy" group with which they sit.

The same sort of problem was visible in several parts of Europe: Angela Merkel was as keen as David Cameron to trim the EU budget but her MEPs failed to support her, as did those of the Dutch prime minister's party, while MEPs representing the Finnish government parties were split.

On the other hand, MEPs from the Swedish Moderaterna party and Polish Civic Platform party supported their respective Prime Ministers and backed the summit deal, in both cases defying the EPP group whip to do so.

You can read the Open Europe blog article here.


Jim said…
Once there was a time I would really have cared. I would have thought "why does the undemocratic EU have any right to determine my level of spending, I want a referendum"

Of course now I am just indifferent.
I do not really care how much money the EU Parliament decide to vote to spend on my behalf and at my expense, why should I? - Under the system I can not change it.

Nor do I think the decision should be for Westminster to decide how much of my money they are going to spend on my behalf, why would I? - under that current system I can not change it.

The closest we ever come to having some sort of democracy is once every five years, when we vote on a meaningless manifesto. More promises are broken than sustained.

Its only a while after the sham election that any sort of budget is revealed, which tells us how much we must pay, and on what it will be spent, we get no choice, we are just told.

So there is the source of my indifference, to be frank I don't really care if I have a choice between a totally unaccountable government based in Brussels, or a totally unaccountable government based in London.

Its like having a choice between French fries and chips.

I have came to understand that <a href="http://www.harrogateagenda.com>Better ideas of government</a> send a far stronger message and are much harder to kill than any political party.

Democracy - From the Greek δημοκρατία (dēmokratía) "rule of the people", which was coined from δῆμος (dêmos) "people" and κράτος (kratos) "power"

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