Senior Member of European Parliament Guy Verhofstadt has made the extraordinary assessment that the lessons to be learnt from Brexit is for Brussels to push for ‘More Europe’ and to take away even more democracy from nation-states.
Speaking ahead of the European Parliament’s vote on the UK-EU withdrawal deal on Wednesday, Mr Verhofstadt rejected the notion that the lesson to be learnt from Brexit is to devolve power back to the nation-state but to give more power to Brussels.
The former Belgian prime minister said: “This lesson, dear colleagues, is not to undo the union, as some are arguing. The lesson is to deeply reform the union. To make a real union in the coming years.
“That means a union without opt-ins, opt-outs, rebates, exceptions, and above all without unanimity rules and veto rights.”
Delusional stuff from the Hof' @guyverhofstadt
— Alexandra Phillips MEP (@BrexitAlex) January 29, 2020
The MEP and European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator has long been in favour of reducing the democratic input of individual countries in order to grant more power to Brussels and in effect create a European superstate.
Two such rights still held by EU countries are the veto and unanimity voting, the latter of which meaning that all countries in the European Council must agree on a proposal before it is adopted. Without unanimity or vetos, the EU could ram through reforms without the agreement of the democratically-elected representatives and force its decisions onto the diverse European nations across the bloc.
Mr Verhofstadt concluded: “Only then can we act, only then can we defend our interests, and defend our values. it is the lack of effectiveness that is the problem that we have seen with Brexit.”
Let me tell you, listening to @guyverhofstadt – he hasn't learnt a thing. Doubling down on sovereighty (impossible in modern world) & issue not EU making too few concessions to nation states, but too many. Full blown Federalist speech. Even Remainers/Europhiles look uncomfortable pic.twitter.com/0xUNcarsBv
— Claire Fox (@Fox_Claire) January 29, 2020
Brexit Party MEPs reacted with incredulity that, just two days away from the UK leaving the EU, one of the bloc’s most senior figures has revealed that Brussels had learnt nothing from Brexit.
Belinda de Lucy, MEP for South East England, remarked: “Democracy will not survive the EU. It can’t.”
MEP for North West England Claire Fox said: “Let me tell you, listening to Guy Verhofstadt — he hasn’t learnt a thing. Doubling down on sovereignty (impossible in the modern world) and [taking] issue not with the EU making too few concessions to nation-states, but too many. Full-blown Federalist speech. Even Remainers/Europhiles look uncomfortable.”
While South East England MEP Alexandra Phillips said: “Delusional stuff from the Hof’.”
Leading Eurocrat Guy Verhofstadt Admits EU Wants an ‘Empire’ https://t.co/lPIPcPeHLh
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) May 22, 2019