Despite there being a perfectly adequate petition for a referendum up and running on the No. 10 website (now standing at
13,870 14,021 signatures), Conservative MEP Geoffrey Van Orden has followed Nigel Farage into the fray and started his own.
Needless to say, in an exhibition of Tory tribalism, ConservativeHome blog is promoting Van Orden’s petition, provoking a comment from Denis Cooper, who writes:
A perfectly good non-partisan e-petition calling for a referendum on the revived EU Constitution has been running for some time…It is very hard to disagree with Dennis. Heaven help us if we do have a referendum. To judge by what is happening here, trying to get the "no" campaign to run a consistent line will be like trying to herd cats.
It was even publicised by Christopher Booker in his Notebook in this week's Sunday Telegraph, as well as being promoted by The Freedom Association, the Democracy Movement and the Campaign for an Independent Britain.
So there was absolutely no need for Geoffrey Van Orden MEP to start his own "me too" petition, just as there was no need for Nigel Farage MEP to start his own "me too" petition.
To do that, and inevitably cause confusion and fragmentation when we need cross-party, non-party unity if we are to have any hope of success, is stupid, selfish and unpatriotic, and frankly I'm disgusted with both of them.
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