Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Back again

The conference season is finally over. We've been at: TUC, Green, Lib Dems, Labour and the Conservatives. Its been very productive for us, but the blog has kinda died of neglect in the meantime... so as a re-starter for ten, have a look at the excellent Chris Hope's piece.

As part of a long runing row with the European Scruitiny Committee about the Government's refusal to discuss the negotiations in Brussels, Jim Murphy said the other day that the Government had signed up to the outline agreement on the revived Constitution after having seen it for the first time just forty-eight hours beforehand. Its a pretty seat-of-the-pants way to negotiate something so important.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

From the Hope blog entry:

"The new 270 page long document was presented to UK officials at 5pm on 19 June this year – two days before EU leaders met at a Council of Ministers meeting on 21 June."

Actually, Hope is wrong on this. What was presented to UK officials was the proposed Treaty mndate to be agreed at the European Council: a mere 17 pages (available in its final form here: http://register.consilium.europa.eu/pdf/en/07/st11/st11218.en07.pdf )

The 270-page draft Treaty was produced by the Portuguese Presidency after the mandate had been agreed at the European Council.

It is surprising you missed this point, since you are usually fairly well-informed about stuff like this.

Which is worse: the 17 pages or the 270 pages? Arguably the 17-page document was a worse deal, since it required Whitehall to work out what it would do to the existing Treaties. And on their blind side, Sarkozy was creeping up with his anti-competitive scissors . . .