Thursday, 19 June 2008

Lords vote to ratify treaty

The House of Lords yesterday evening gave final approval to the Lisbon Treaty in its scheduled Third Reading.

A last-minute amendment to delay ratification of the treaty out of respect for the Irish referendum result was voted down.

Lord Howell of Guildford's amendment proposed that "this bill be read a third time no earlier than Monday 20 October 2008 to allow — (a) Parliament to consider the most appropriate response to the changed circumstances and uncertainties caused by the rejection of the Lisbon Treaty in the Irish referendum; and (b) any amendments to the bill made necessary by those changed circumstances to be considered in detail by the House, if necessary on recommitment."

Hitting the 'pause' button would indeed have been the proper course of action, if the government were serious about their declared wish to "take the time to allow the Irish Government to make proposals on what they will do next".

Instead Gordon Brown has shamefully gone along with the anti-democratic EU ploy to amass a weight of numbers behind the treaty, in order to bully the Irish government into holding a second referendum, and then the Irish people into approving what may only be a mildly 'clarified' treaty.

Howell's amendment was rejected by 277 against to 184 in favour.

The debate was interrupted by four protestors voicing their demands for a referendum from the public gallery.

The government intends to seek Royal Assent to the Bill very quickly - reportedly within the next 24hrs - just in time for David Miliband to get a nice pat on the head from his EU colleagues while in Brussels today and tomorrow for a meeting of the European Council.

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