Bureaucrats in Brussels are holding back key legislation that would impact the United Kingdom and other member states for fear of impacting the British referendum on membership of the European Union, it has been claimed today.
Writing in Politico.eu, Brussels correspondent Tara Palmeri details how post-Brexit, there may well be a deluge of onerous legislation dumped on EU member states, fuelling fears of a “Brussels Time Bomb”.
Officials have reportedly said that key EU initiatives which may be “controversial” have been shelved to assist Prime Minister David Cameron’s campaign to keep Britain in the European Union. The legislation includes a €20bn increase in the EU’s budget, new rules on the freedom of movement, and indeed the accession to the European Convention on Human Rights – a deeply unpopular, sovereignty-stripping treaty.
“There’s a kind of a deflection of attention to some issues,” Mercedes Bresso, an Italian MEP from the Socialists and Democrats group said. She added the referendum was causing a “delay in some debates,” admitting: “Now is not the moment to create more problems.”
“These proposals can be discussed after June without creating too many difficulties,” a French official said, adding: “In fact, it would be more problematic if we had to negotiate under the pressure of the U.K.. So, in a way, it protects the other member states as well.”
“Everyone knows this is not a good time because of the problems with the U.K.,” said Pedro López de Pablo, spokesman for the European People’s Party group in the Parliament. “The Commission has been very cautious on all of these things. Nowadays we’re in a public opinion environment that everyone attacks the European Union.”
And perhaps the most revealing comment came from Polish MEP Jan Olbrycht who is also a member of the EU’s budgets committee. He said: “They don’t want to open the pandora’s box before the referendum”.
But some MEPs on the budgets committee say the delay will make their oversight role more difficult by not giving them enough time to consider proposed revisions submitted by the Commission. They say they need to see the proposal now — and not in September after the referendum dust has settled and the summer break is over.
“They don’t want to open the pandora’s box before the referendum,” said Polish MEP Jan Olbrycht, a member of the budgets committee. “We want the Commission to make their proposals as soon as possible. We need a serious debate about the review and the revision. There’s no time to waste.”
A Commission spokesman told Politico the EU was currently in a “period of reflection” over how to proceed with the accession to the European Convention of Human Rights, which could exercise supreme authority over Britain’s judicial system.
A spokesman for the Leave.EU campaign told Breitbart London: “It has become clear that Britain can expect a deluge of onerous Brussels regulation if we vote to stay in the European Union. This Brussels time bomb can only be avoided by voting to leave on June 23rd. The fact that the European Union is trying to hide this from the British electorate is just another sign of the kind of underhand tactics they employ to keep the big lobbyists and corporate interests in Brussels happy”.