Proponents of European integration are worried today that Irish voters will reject the Lisbon Treaty, which is essentially a repackaging of the EU Constitution that was defeated in 2005. They are so worried that they are making rather strange arguments for why the Irish should vote for the treaty. The New York Times quotes French foreign minister Bernard Kouchner saying:
It would be very, very troubling that we would not be able to count on the Irish who counted a lot on
Times reporter Sarah Lyall goes on to explain:
Irelandis one of Europe’s great success stories. European largess has helped fuel the country’s extraordinarily rapid transformation from a poor, homogeneous, largely agrarian society to a place of flourishing international business.
It doesn’t speak well of the treaty that its proponents must resort to saying “you owe us” in trying to convince Irish voters. If giving the EU more power were prospectively good for
The Irish have had success with less government. The Lisbon Treaty further centralizes power in a club that sees low taxes as contrary to European solidarity. Irish voters are doing the math now.