Thursday 22 January 2009

Silly EU policy

The Telegraph is running stories saying Ken Clarke is warning Cameron he might be seen as a “right wing nationalist” over Europe.

It’s a bit of a stretched interpretation of a speech he gave at the University of Nottingham if you ask me.

What Clarke actually said was: “A lot will depend on relations with Europe, because Obama doesn't want his strongest European ally led by a right wing nationalist.

“He wants them to be a key player inside Europe and he'll start looking at whoever is in Germany or France if we start being isolationist.”

He then went on to say the Tory party is not like that now and will probably move towards Europe in the future…

“I think the need to be working with Obama will influence my party on Europe. It is still firmly Eurosceptic but it's now moderate, harmless Euroscepticism.

“It's a bit silly sometimes like which group do you join in the European Parliament – but full blooded stuff like renegotiating the treaty of accession is as dead as a dodo.

“We've got lots of ideas on European policy on energy, security, relations with Russia, climate change, all that kind of thing.”

For me the better story would have been Clarke’s criticism of the dilly-dallying on which group to join in the European Parliament.

The break from the main right-of-centre group was a direct pledge of Cameron’s – so this part is really a direct criticism of his leader.

HEADLINE: Cam’s “silly” Euro plan.

When I become editor of the Telegraph I’ll rehash it.

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