Thursday, January 17th 2013 - 08:18 UTC

Lifetime speech for Cameron: how much Europe Brits are willing to tolerate

British Prime Minister David Cameron came under renewed pressure to loosen his country's ties with the European Union today, two days ahead of a major speech in which he will spell out plans to renegotiate Britain's membership of the EU.

One third of Cameron's parliamentary party drew up the “Manifesto for Change”

As different interests jockey to influence the content of his speech, which some politicians believe may end up reshaping Britain's role in the world, a group of influential lawmakers in Cameron's own ruling Conservative party published a list of areas where they want decision-making brought back to London.

The fact that the group, who represent about one third of Cameron's parliamentary party, drew up the “Manifesto for Change”, illustrates how much pressure Cameron is under from within his own party, the senior partner in a two-party coalition, to dilute Britain's four-decade-old EU links.

Cameron will deliver his speech - one of the most closely-watched Europe addresses by a British leader since World War Two - in Amsterdam on Friday, a choice meant to underline the fact that some other EU member states such as the Netherlands are sympathetic to many of his policies towards the bloc.

He is expected to say he will offer a referendum on any new settlement he manages to hammer out with the EU, probably in 2018. His prospects of success are uncertain, however, as it is unclear whether some other EU member states, notably Germany and France, will go along with his plan.

Andrea Leadsom, a Conservative MP and one of the group's founders, said she thought Cameron's proposed EU renegotiation strategy and the specific ideas her own group was pushing were realistic.

“In our manifesto we are very carefully treading a fine line between calling for things that are just going to be a non-starter, where the rest of Europe will say 'just forget it', and choosing those topics that are really important to Britain, that would really be a game-changer for Britain's relationship with the EU,” she told BBC radio.

Areas where the MPs, who call themselves the Fresh Start group, would like to see powers clawed back include large swathes of employment, social and criminal justice law. They are also pressing for an “emergency brake” on new laws that could affect Britain's powerhouse financial services industry, and are demanding that the EU agriculture and fisheries budget be overhauled.

The MPs are also asking Cameron to withdraw Britain from the EU “regional policy” which sees EU funds handed out to poorer regions, and to press him to restrict the rights of future immigrants from countries such as Romania and Bulgaria.

15 comments Feed

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1 willi1 (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 08:46 am Report abuse
poor brits!
you want everything for you and the rest is for the rest.
the rests of your imperium are concentrated the “City”, but you still think “big”.
it is time that fresh generations take over the government in Britain. Once Scotland is out: What is left to pay your debts? you should be happy to be member of the EU.
2 Clyde15 (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 10:18 am Report abuse
Scotland out ? When will that happen ? I live in Scotland and this is news to me !
The EU should be happy that we are a member as we are a net contributor to the budget.
When we joined the EU it was a free trade area which benefited all members. The common agricultural policy was designed to suit the French and caused UK food prices to rise but we had to accept that as price of membership.
Since we joined there has been a gradual push towards an United States of Europe. No one asked the UK population if this was what they wanted so maybe it is time we had a voice in any decision made about this. To ask for this does not mean we are anti-European.
3 Ken Ridge (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 11:14 am Report abuse
“Once Scotland is out: What is left to pay your debts? you should be happy to be member of the EU.”

It seems you would enjoy a break up of the UK ? It is highly unlikely that Scotland will break from the union, the ties between Scotland and the rest of the UK are very strong. I believe Scotland will in time enjoy more power to conduct it's own affairs, but will still remain in the union.

As for EU, I think most in the UK would be happy to remain as a trading block, however as Clyde15 has stated we do not want a Unites States of Europe which is the way things are starting to sway, we need a referendum on this issue and soon.
4 Santa Fe (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 12:33 pm Report abuse
1 - I think you sould do some research and see how much the UK gives the EU in cash per year.

Dont get you rambled point about Scotland, as stated above we dont want Scotland to leave but if it does wouldnt make diddly difference as we pay in more to Scotland than it produces in taxes.
But this is the same with lots of regions and isnt the point, we are stronger together, and the polls suggest they will vote to stay, but hey its democracy and they can choose Self determination!!!!
5 Idlehands (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 12:53 pm Report abuse
The problem for Scottish Nationalists is issues like Catalonia. EU states do not want to set a precedent for breakaway regions so will be heavy handed towards the likes of Scotland should they choose to leave the union. The comment last year by the EU president made it clear that Scotland would have to re-apply to join the EU - a fact that Alex Salmond appears to be pretending isn't true.

Salmond also believes Scotland has the right to be an independent nation and yet continue to use GBP - I can't see that happening either. They'll have to create the Scottish pound as a completley free floating currency and adopt the Euro should they choose to rejoin the EU.

I don't believe the Nats have a hope of winning the referendum so I doubt it will be of any relevance in the end.
6 Schneckster (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 12:57 pm Report abuse
#1 I'm not sure why you bring Scotland into this. It has nothing at all to do with the story. But since you mention it, I think you'll find Scots are not inclined to break up the union. It certainly doesn't encourage them to do it when the people behind the campaign for a break up are routinely proved to be evasive and sparing with the truth (Salmond “We'll inherit UK membership of the EU!”... Barrosso “No you bleedin' won't!”)

In respect to the article, however, Mercopress needs a little more research than just the Guardian. The Fresh Start group are Europhiles pretending to be sceptics. While they may have some points in their “manifesto”, they are as committed to EU membership as Cameron and the other main parties. The fact that this is regularly shown to be contradictory to public opinion seems to bother them not one jot. At the next Euro elections in 2014, expect to see even more MEPs from UKIP.

This Fresh Start group are an obfuscation to try and divert sceptic attention away from Cameron and portray the Conservatives as eurosceptic. Unfortunately, after many lies in the face of clear facts, it is no longer working on an electorate fed up of being conned.
7 Conqueror (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 02:57 pm Report abuse
@1 I take it you're an arsie. And thus never looks up facts, or law or anything else before shooting its mouth off! WE want what is right for US. And that means what we signed up for back in the 70s. Not the creeping, malignant, fascist dictatorship that the EU has become. You should know about creeping, malignant, fascist dictatorships. Arsieland is one. As for Scotland, they can stay or they can go, as they choose. But they'll be very poor. Try the law on “successor” states. They'll get exactly what the UK is prepared to give them. Which is unlikely to be much. They like to crow about their forthcoming wealth from gas and oil. Except that most of it is subject to multilateral treaties. To which Scotland is not entitled to become a signatory. So they can forget that! Then they'd like to become a member of the EU. Good luck with that. The rest of the UK is trying to get out. And Scotland can only join if all the other members agree. Here's a list of the members that will object: Spain, France, Italy. And the UK, of course. I wonder how Scotland is going to get on when it does join. And is required to adopt the euro. And is required to adopt the Schengen agreement so that it can't control who enters. And has a whole country, England, across which its not allowed to transport goods. Especially since it has no merchant fleet or international airline. In an “independent” Scotland, Scottish “exports” will be transported by rowing boat across the North Sea. The North Sea is very dangerous in winter! But the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy will still be around. Just to make sure that no “independent” Scots trespass into UK waters. And sink them if they do!
8 toooldtodieyoung (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 07:10 pm Report abuse
“Lifetime speech for Cameron: how much Europe Brits are willing to tolerate”

Like he has actually asked anyone!! Much less the people that he is supposted to represent.....LOL

Well Camer-moron, you want to win votes?

You want to cut the British debt?

You want to give the public what the public wants, not what you think the public wants?

You want to claw back border control / employment, social and criminal justice law?


Brussels is corrupt, a waste of money and useless. I don't see “Britain on the field and playing hard” All I see Britian bending over and taking it.

I certainly don't see “British ministers standing up for British interests” All I see is them paying for their prostitutes and cocaine on their credit cards while waiting for the the next back-hander.

No, The EU has had it's day. If it was a race horse it would be time to take to the glue factory. It's old and tired and corrupt.

The £60bn we “Contribute” to the EU each and every year could be / should be better spent on Britain, at home, on education, the NHS and defence, not used to pander to non-elected european idiots.
9 briton (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 08:09 pm Report abuse
[1] go live in north Korea, CFK don’t want you,

The meeting tomorrow is OFF ,
This hostage situation has taken its toll,

British union.
Out of the euro gravy train,
10 Clyde15 (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 08:23 pm Report abuse
Talking out of your arse as usual.
OK, we will play your scenario. At present, a proportion of the RN, Army and RAF personnel are Scottish. Have they all to be dismissed from the service if Scotland becomes independent ?
That would leave a shortfall in your military.

So, the RN would attack Scottish merchant vessels if they dared to enter “English ”waters on peaceful business. You would close the English Channel to Scotland alone. This would cause something of an international incident. In this case, I don't think England would have many supporters if this happened. I am sure that Scotland would have many more supporters than England and some of them could do you financial harm
So, what you want is a declaration of war against Scotland taking your England back to the 16th century. On a population basis , yes England could win a victory of sorts but would be destroyed in the process. If you thought that the trouble in N.Ireland was bad, it would be a picnic compared with what could be unleashed in England by sabotage etc.
Of course the above is just as much nonsense as you propagate.
Where do you get your burning hatred from ?
Were you kicked out of your job for being mentally unstable and this has left you bitter and twisted. At your age you should be mellowing and enjoying what little time you have left.
Or maybe this is your enjoyment - in that case you should get your self certified and go and join PH - there is nothing to choose between you except your language is even worse than his.
11 toooldtodieyoung (#) Jan 17th, 2013 - 09:43 pm Report abuse
2 Clyde15

No one wants to see Scotland leave the UK. Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales are what makes Great Britain, “Great”

To paraphrase one comedian:-

This is the United Kingdom.
It is united in the fact the Scottish hate the English.
The Welsh hate the English
The Irish hate the English
and the English hate everyone, including all the other English!!

Right, so the Scottish what independance? It would be sad to see them go, but if that's what they want to do then.....Good luck and god speed.

Which brings me to Europe, why can't Joe public have a say? it's our taxes that get poured into it anyway. Why don't we get to say whether we should stay or go?

This would be a chance for a foward looking Prime minister to think to him / her self “Right, I'm going to get two groups of MP's to argue it out on prime time television all about the pro's and con's of Europe and then the country will go to the polls and decide”

Somehow, I don't think that is going to happen though...........
12 Tobers (#) Jan 18th, 2013 - 04:47 pm Report abuse
If Scotland voted for independence (looking unlikely now) Westminster wouldnt like it initially but would respect it. Nice to see they and the Falklanders have a choice through referendum - wouldnt the Malvinistas agree? (No they wouldn't because ideology is more important than rationality)

Lets imagine Santa Cruz or Mendoza etc wanting to go independent - and why not? Wonder how that would play out in the already failed state of Argentina?
13 you are not first (#) Jan 18th, 2013 - 10:07 pm Report abuse
Is Cameron going to participate in the tour of France ? Trust any word he say and continue to be the servants of the 21 century .
14 Clyde15 (#) Jan 19th, 2013 - 10:09 am Report abuse
No, I have no intentions of competing in the tour de France.
The next sentence makes no sense in English. Would you care to elucidate ?
15 briton (#) Jan 19th, 2013 - 08:17 pm Report abuse
poor david,
now he has obarma on his back,

it could have been CFK on his front lol.

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