Juncker Blocks Cameron’s EU Reform Attempt

The whole foundation of the Conservative party’s position on remaining in the EU is that it is possible to ‘reform’ the EU to achieve a degree of independence, instead of leaving. However, this week Jean-Claude Juncker the European Commission chief, blocked a bid for Britain to take back powers from Brussels. Telegraph

A European Commission official said firmly:

“No treaty change proposals are envisaged until after November 2019, the end of Mr Juncker’s mandate as president of the commission.” 

Jean-Claude Juncker has ruled out any treaty re-negotiations while he remains president of the European Commission, which would leave the UK with no prospect of change until the end of 2019, two years after David Cameron promised the public referendum vote

Reaction to this has been strong and seems likely to strengthen the resolve of those wanting to leave the EU.  “It is infuriating that such a man has managed to secure so much power. But those campaigning to get Britain out should ultimately view him as an asset to the cause. If British exit is achieved in 2017 Jean-Claude Juncker’s dogged intransigence will have ultimately played a significant role in the fracturing of his beloved EU.” Express

Stephen Pollard writes:

“For the Eurofanatics it’s fine that Britain can be outvoted and we have to roll over because they have such contempt for the idea of the nation state that they positively relish it. But for the rest of us, a supposedly self governing democracy should have the power to govern itself. And it should certainly not be subject to the dictats of an unelected bureaucrat.” Express

This latest move by Mr Juncker illustrates the problems of dealing with an institution where we have no control over who is put in power over us. Mr Juncker is not someone who would naturally be a choice of a democratic electorate, as this article on his background illustrates. Jean-Claude Juncker

Locally, any debate which we have involving our exit from the EU will now be coloured by this latest bombshell from the EU. It is hardly a coincidence that it comes pointedly so close to the election, as Mr Juncker’s presidential appointment was vigorously opposed by Mr Cameron last year, preferring his own candidate.

Steven Whalley