13 June 2008

There's No Lisbon!

The first results are coming in now, and it looks like a solid No vote in the Lisbon Reform Treaty referendum. With a probable national turnout of 50-55%, the No campaign seems to have captured about 53% of the vote. With rural (Donegal North-East, Mayo) and working class urban (Dublin South-West, Cork North-Central) areas voting as high as 65% No, and a lower than expected turnout in middle-class urban areas that did vote Yes (Dun Laoghaire, Dublin South), the results seem to be a rejection of Peter Mandelson's WTO negotiations by farmers and opposition to the government's attempts at obfuscation by the urban working class, but no doubt analysis will continue for many weeks to come.

Regardless of the reasons, it is a fairly damning rejection by the people of all the major political parties, and one hopes that the will of the people will be accepted by the politicians, who will take this new mandate and represent the wishes of the people when they return to Brussels and Paris (as the French take over the rotating EU presidency) to figure out what happens next. It is also pretty amazing that less than 800,000 people have decided the fate of the entire EU, over 490 Million people, showing the effect that even a single person's vote has had.

The highlight of the count so far for me has been the attempt by RTE to interview Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan in the RDS this morning which was scuppered by assorted No campaigners chanting "there's No Lisbon" to the tune of 2Unlimited's "No Limits", over and over again until he had to abandon the interview and leave the building.

"No Limits" topped the chart in 17 European countries in 1993, perhaps the last time Europe was so united.

Links
RTE 1pm news (Videos at bottom of page)
Results by constituency

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