Their representatives are meeting in Madrid today, intending to discuss how to find a way out of the "stalemate" on the EU constitution. These are the 18 Nations which have ratified the treaty (even if Germany hasn't), and they are brooking no compromise.
Not for them the idea put forward by presidential candidate Nicolas Sarkozy, who wants a "mini-treaty" which deals only with institutional reforms, or filleting the document to find issues on which all 27 EU member states can agree.
No, under the aegis of Portugal and Spain, deputy foreign ministers are looking for ways of by-passing the blockage imposed by the French and Dutch referendums, and getting the whole treaty passed.
We are obviously dealing with some very desperate people here. Even if the thing could be got past the French and the Dutch – and that is unlikely enough – the full monte would require a referendum in Ireland, Denmark, Britain and possibly Poland and the Czech Republic. Any one of those countries could scupper the project anew and it is almost beyond conjecture that one of them might.
All the "colleagues" can possibly achieve is to re-open old wounds and seriously hack off a very large number of "European" citizens. It simply ain't going to fly.
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