The BBC reports this morning that  group of “Tory Grandees” is issuing a broadside against David Cameron’s plans to take Conservative MEPs out of the ultra-federalist EPP group in the European parliament.
I have urged this policy within the Party, and within the delegation, since I was elected in 1999.  It is simply intolerable for a broadly eurosceptic Conservative Party to have its MEPs sit within the uber-integrationist EPP group, which describes itself as “The motor of European Integration”.  Our members and activists just can’t square that with our EU policies.  And they are right.
Within the belly of the beast, our voice is silenced.  The EPP’s promise five years ago to “respect our distinctive position on Constitutional issues” has been ignored.  We have lost speaking opportunities, with the federalist EPP leader speaking “on our behalf” over and over again, without referencing our dissent.  We have lost something like £500,000 a year in parliamentary expenses creamed off by the EPP to spend on federalist projects, like its Schumann Foundation.
The idea that we shall be “Isolated and Marginalised” outside the EPP is absurd.  On the contrary, we are isolated and marginalised within the EPP.  They want us in to boost their numbers, and to boost their coffers, but most of all to keep us quiet.  Once we leave, we can still make common cause with the EPP on those issues where we agree.  But we shall also be able to extract a negotiated price for our support, as we cannot do at the moment.  And where we disagree, we shall have the speaking time to oppose them.
One of our strongest critics is Lib-Dem MEP Bill Turncoat Dunn, who during the current euro-election campaign has repeatedly said that David Cameron has made “a dreadfully stupid decision” to leave the EPP.  This is ironic, since Bill himself, back in 2000, did exactly the same.  He left the EPP to join a smaller group, and he did so for precisely the same reason as we are doing so — because he profoundly disagreed with his erstwhile colleagues about the future shape and direction of Europe.
The European parliament enjoys a poor reputation, not least because it is a mish-mash of consensus, with no credible opposition.  The voices of sceptics are weak and divided (indeed “isolated and marginalised”!).  We shall create, for the first time, a credible force of opposition in the parliament, and both we, and it, will gain respect for doing so.
For these “Tory Grandees” to launch their attack just days before a European election is an outrage.  Not only self-serving self-publicists, they are vandals and saboteurs and traitors at the heart of the Party.

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8 Responses to TRAITORS!

  1. Yorkshireman says:

    Great post Roger.

    Patten, Brittan have long since failed to represent the British people. They are simply now part of the EU’s federalist political class and promote their interests above those of Britain’s.

    These establishment timeservers,from a different generation, who enjoy well paid EU pensions simply parrot the EU line time after time and rely on the usual sensationalist arguments to stifle dissent.

    I’ve no intention of listening to that generation ever again.

  2. Victor, NW Kent says:

    We understand that the grandees include Patten, Britten and Garel-Jones. The first two one could expect and I am surprised to hear that they are still members of the party.
    Tristan Garel-Jones said this in 1994 ” The trouble with the Single Market is
    that it produced a glut of legislation, not just in our parliament, but in
    other parliaments, which was very often intrusive and silly, and that has I
    think undermined many people’s view of the Community”.


  3. Malcolm Edward says:

    Traitors indeed !

    Fortunately they are history, and I look forward to the biggest traitors, the Labour Govt, joining them – hopefully never to be resurrected.

    David Cameroon’s vision of moving power closer to the people is the exact opposite of what the traitors desire for us.

  4. Tapestry says:

    Roger, you declare a touching faith that the EP will one day command respect. Making shit smell less does not stop it from being exactly what it is.

  5. Roger Helmer says:

    Thanks Tapestry. I am happy to respect foreign legislatures (if they deserve respect). Doesn’t mean I think that our country should be represented in them!

  6. All very well, leaving the EPP is a good idea, but where will you go instead? To your new “eurosceptic grouping”, so I gather. But I must ask you, why is this necessary? There is already a eurosceptic grouping in the EP, it is called IND/DEM. I fail to understand why the Conservatives cannot simply join this grouping, which shares their basic views – unless of course the Tories are so scared of UKIP that they can’t even sit with them when they are worthy allies as they surely are in the EP.

  7. Roger Helmer says:

    Thanks, Sound and Fury. We believe that we can create a more substantial, credible and mainstream group. It may well be that when we have formed it, elements of a couple of other smaller groups may find it attractive …..

    • Well, best of luck with that and I hope to see a strong Opposition voice emerge in the EP, whatever banner it may charge under (though preferably one carrying the word “REFERENDUM” like the ones snatched away last year…)

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