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Cameron Set The EU Bar Just Six Inches High… He Has Still Managed To Fall Short

Tuesday was the day that Cam’s Scam finally unravelled. Britain’s Prime Minister, David Cameron, arrived in Brussels 30 minutes late. It may have worked out better for him if he hadn’t come at all.

Expecting to be received like a returning hero, Mr. Cameron went from one bruising encounter to another and neither his deal, nor his ego, came out in one piece. 

One pasting that he did manage to squirm out of was meeting with UKIP leader and EFDD group leader Nigel Farage in front of other senior MEPs. Cameron bottled it; he knew Nigel would expose his pitiful deal and he turned chicken. The deal would have been ripped apart in an open Conference of Presidents and it would have become clear that even if he wins the referendum, the parliament can and will veto its terms. 

Nothing in this renegotiated package works for the British people. None of it will be enforceable; he is trying to sell the British people a pup and he was too scared of Nigel being able to expose that. 

Many commentators have mused that Mr. Cameron’s attempt to force a “remain” vote in the referendum has been hampered by his ‘renegotiation’. By attempting to reason with Eurocrats, the Prime Minister has shown their true colours to the British people; stubborn, conceited and fully devoted to the creation of a European Super State. If for one minute our PM thought that pesky little Britain would get in the way of that then he has misjudged the tenacious arrogance of these people.

And what Mr. Cameron has been offered in this European Union (EU) proposal is… peanuts. Britain pays £55million per year in child benefit for kids who live in the EU. Under the proposals being discussed, we would save a part of this money – but in the scheme of things it’s trivial. The UK sends £55 million pounds to the EU every single day.

Worst of all, of course, is Martin Schulz, ‘President’ of the European Parliament. Mr. Cameron may have left him waiting in the Brussels cold for half an hour, but Mr. Schulz well and truly put Cameron’s deal on ice. He made it abundantly clear that the European Parliament can scupper Cameron’s pathetic proposal even if it is passed in the referendum. You have to ask; who would buy a second-hand car without being able to check if the engine started before they purchase it? 

There are many groups here who are spoiling for a fight and they would love nothing more than to tear up the agreement post referendum. After all, these people want to remind Prime Ministers and Presidents who is really in charge now: not the electorate, but cocky eurocrats who take great pleasure in ignoring the people’s will. 

Once the charade is over and Mr. Cameron feels he has put on enough of a show to present his ‘renegotiation’, what will we be left with?

No treaty change, no repatriation of powers, no ability to control our own laws, our money or our borders. What it means is more Europe with an EU army, EU accession of Turkey, and EU primacy over our laws and our courts. EU lawyers have explicitly said that the EU treaties take precedence over political agreements meaning without treaty change any deal is meaningless. 

As for Mr. Cameron’s charade that his deal will be lodged with the United Nations – that too is meaningless. The judgement of the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg is supreme regarding EU treaties and law. EU judges have stated that they will ignore international law where it conflicts with the EU Treaties. In 2008, the ECJ said that “the obligations imposed by an international agreement cannot have the effect of prejudicing the constitutional principles” of the EU Treaties.

The Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary both demanded that fundamental treaty change was the red line; a central change to our relationship with the institutions. Yet it seems everyone apart from our Prime Minister sees that his deal achieves nothing of the sort. There is no fundamental reform, there is some fiddling around the edges on migrant benefits which I expect will be watered down further this week.

Even then, the effect of this will not be to reduce the numbers coming to Britain, but given the huge increase that is coming to the minimum wage, even more people will come. The real truth is that this deal is not worth the paper it’s written on. It is subject to European Parliamentary approval and ultimately judgements of the European Court of Justice.

Mr. Cameron set the bar to jump over six inches off the ground, yet remarkably he has still managed to fall short. 

Jean Claude Juncker said that he has no plan B for Brexit as “it won’t happen”. Unlike the Commission President, many British people certainly do have another plan, another destiny – of taking back the freedom to prosper on the world stage, to be self-governing, to control our borders, our money, and our lives. Ignore this phony renegotiation, the choice is simple. Status quo is not an option; if we vote to remain we will be dragged head first into a full blown ‘United States of Europe’ the day after the referendum. If we vote to leave, Britain can become a democratic, self-governing, independent nation once again. I for one cannot wait.

Nathan Gill MEP is leader of UKIP Wales

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