Cameron: Time for Brits to Figure Out EU Relationship

With euro project affecting sovereignty, PM wants popular mandate
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 1, 2012 7:42 AM CDT
Cameron: Time for Brits to Figure Out EU Relationship
British Prime Minister David Cameron leaves after a second day of the European Union leaders summit in Brussels on June 29, 2012.   (Getty Images)

With the eurozone crisis forcing European countries ever closer together—think eurobonds, stimulus transfer payments between countries, and more treaties— Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron is broaching the word "referendum," saying Britons might have to go to the polls again to determine what they want. "As we get closer to the end point, we will need to consider how best to get the full-hearted support of the British people," Cameron writes in an op-ed in the Telegraph.

Although Cameron stressed that he wanted an approach more subtle than just an "in/out" referendum, analysts say that bringing up the subject shows the pressure he is getting from eurosceptic conservative backbenchers. Critics note that since the last referendum on Europe in 1975, the nature of the EU has changed significantly. With the eurozone in crisis and changing rapidly, Tory operatives say this is not the time to put Europe to a vote, but it could be coming soon. "We need to see where everything ends up before we consult the British people," an insider close to Cameron told the Daily Mail. "It could either be a standalone referendum or it could part of the Conservative manifesto at the next election." (More Great Britain stories.)

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