Friday, June 20, 2008

Ah, Some Clarity

Richard Delevan has been tracking and hunting for the elusive Lisbon Poll commissioned by Eurobarometer following the Lisbon vote.

The first report of a detailed poll having been undertaken was in Tuesday's Indo. The Independent piece revealed that three quarters of No voters did so on the basis that parts of the treaty could be renegotiated. This claim is substantiated in the poll findings published today.

The same story claimed that "Immigration was an unspoken factor in the vote, as people expressed concern about the numbers of immigrants coming to the country in such a short time".
Except it wasn't.
The Eurobarometer poll noted that only 1% of those who voted No did so on the basis of fears around immigration and only 2% on concerns about the introduction of abortion, gay marriage and euthanasia.

Yet these issues have been repeated by all the politicians, Government and even EU Commissioners as an explanation of the No vote. It seems that having demonised the No campaigners before the referendum the Irish political and media is intent of demonising the No vote itself.

Some might say that just politics, but its not, the No vote was not a vote for Sinn Féin, Libertas, Patricia Mc Kenna or Joe Higgins. If our No vote is misrepresented by the Irish Government in Brussels we will end up with a rehashed Lisbon Mark II being presented back to the electorate in 2009, with some meaningless declarations about abortion and conscription.

This referendum that would end in a second defeat for the Government. That defeat would be interpreted around Europe as "we gave them what they want and they said no, what is wrong with these ungrateful anti-EU Irish".

Now that would be a scenario that would be very negative for Ireland.

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