I hope I have misunderstood something but.........
It seems that as the incoming government you:
1) cannot fix the economy without changing EU rules;:
2) will put EU issues aside to concentrate on fixing the economy.
Chicken versus Egg
"It's only words..."
On Tuesday 6 October William Hague spoke at the Daily Telegraph forum at the Manchester conference.
Much of the debate centred on the day's principal topic: “Rebuilding our broken economy”.
Given the urgency of addressing these matters, I asked the question on constraints faced by the incoming government by EU directives and the impending ratification of the Lisbon Treaty.
His answer: that it would be necessary to opt out of the social chapter and the Working Time Directive.
What was clearly foreseeable on 6 October has now come to pass; the Treaty has been ratified.
You have now said:-
“First, if we win the next election, we will prohibit, by law, the transfer of further power to the EU without a referendum. Never again should it be possible for a British government to transfer power to the EU without the British people’s consent.
“Second, we will introduce a United Kingdom Sovereignty Bill to make it clear that ultimate authority stays in this country, in our Parliament.
“And third, we want to negotiate three specific guarantees with our European partners over powers that we believe should reside with Britain, not the EU. We will negotiate the return of Britain’s opt-out from social and employment legislation in those areas which have proved most damaging to our economy and public services. We also want a complete opt-out from the Charter of Fundamental Rights. And we would negotiate for a return of powers in criminal justice to prevent EU judges gaining steadily greater control over our criminal justice system.”
With the power now vested in the EU following the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty aka the European Constitution, it is surely disingenuous (at the very least) to suggest that you will be allowed to pass the legislation you now plan?
Considering them in turn
- …”we will prohibit, by law, the transfer of further power to the EU without a referendum…”.
The treaty already gives the EU the power to take such powers as they wish (the escalator clause). So you don’t promise that such powers will NOT be transferred – you simply promise a referendum.
So you hold a referendum on a proposed transfer, we vote NO, and the power transfers anyway – as EU law overrides local law under the treaty..
“…we will introduce a United Kingdom Sovereignty Bill to make it clear that ultimate authority stays in this country, in our Parliament. “.
You don’t promise to pass such a law – and any such law is meaningless anyway as the treaty states that EU law overrides local law – so again pointless…
“…And third, we want to negotiate three specific guarantees with our European partners over powers …”.
You can guarantee to fail on this. Europe ministers from three member states: Poland, the Netherlands and the Irish Republic; have all stated that you would fail to achieve your demand to repatriate social and employment laws to Britain as this would need to the agreement of all 27 leaders of the EU because it would require amendment of EU treaties.
UK legislation of this kind would require our prior withdrawal from the Union to have any purpose.