March 5, 2008


Three Lib Dem MPs ready to quit over treaty (Greg Hurst, 3/05/08, Times of London)

Nick Clegg faced the first crisis of his leadership of the Liberal Democrats today as three of his senior spokesman prepared to quit the front bench to vote for a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty.

David Heath, Alistair Carmichael and Tim Farron, his spokesmen on justice, Scotland and the countryside respectively, were preparing to resign from the Lib Dem shadow cabinet to allow them to rebel this evening against the party's position.

All three refused to follow his instructions to abstain in the Commons vote on whether to hold a referendum on the treaty, which is being proposed by the Conservatives, and will instead vote in favour of a ballot.

EU treaty vote: Brown taunted by Cameron (Robert Winnett, James Kirkup and Toby Helm, 05/03/2008, Daily Telegraph)

Gordon Brown today refused to reveal whether he thought he could win a referendum on the European Reform Treaty, as it emerged three senior Lib Dems plan to resign after a crucial vote by MPs this evening.

Challenged by David Cameron at Prime Minister's Questions, Mr Brown repeatedly refused to answer whether the referendum he is blocking could be won if put to a public vote.

The Conservative leader accused the Prime Minister of lacking "courage" on the issue and said his actions threatened to undermine public trust in politicians by abandoning the Labour manifesto pledge to hold a public vote on a new EU constitution.

Sadly, Mr. Cameron himself lacks the courage to run a full-blooded anti-Europe campaign.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 5, 2008 11:50 AM
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