“It’s a very high-risk gamble..”

Here’s one to watch out for. BBC Europe editor Mark Mardell has a prediction.

My prediction is that next week the Irish government will announce that it will ask the Irish people to vote again on the Lisbon Treaty in a new referendum next autumn.

The Irish prime minister is on a whistle-stop tour of Europe – first Luxembourg, then Germany, London on Thursday then a quick trip to Paris on Friday. While he does the major players, his Europe minister is visiting the capitals of the smaller countries. (Luxembourg may be a tiny country but Jean-Claude Juncker is a big player, on account of his political longevity and his role leading the eurozone countries.)

What they are hammering out is the outline of a deal to put to next week’s European Council. They are looking for something that would allow them to say this is not holding the same vote all over again.

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  • Why am I still a UUP voter?

    I’ve got an idea for the Free State’s government for their slogan this time round too: “you’re poor (again) now, so do what you’re told. Or else”.

  • Cahal

    My prediction is this government will be gone by then.

  • Comrade Stalin

    If they even think about trying this, they’ll get their ass kicked.

  • ulsterfan

    Far too early to make any announcement for something to take place next autumn.
    Anyone who tries to plan so far ahead is a fool.
    A week is a long time in politics.

  • veritas

    anyone who asks the Irish electorate to vote again may look for the Irish equivalent of a P45.

  • Ri Na Deise

    No Surrender to Brussels. 🙂

  • Dave

    My prediction is Enda Kenny for Taoiseach (g-d help us all) within six weeks of the government being forced to resign after the Lisbon Treaty is resoundingly rejected by the Irish people for the second time. This is political suicide for Fianna Fail. They’re so out of touch with the people that they don’t grasp how opposed the Irish people are European integration.

  • Dave

    “Far too early to make any announcement for something to take place next autumn.”

    Not really – they’ll figure that the initial anger at the government for ignoring the outcome of a referendum and forcing the people to vote again on it until they give an answer that is acceptable to the EU will have dissipated by then.

  • George

    An unpopular and so far totally incompetent government calls a second referendum on Lisbon with the electorate knowing a second no vote would almost certainly lead to the collapse of said government.

    I’m with Dave on the political suicide point.

    But if FF can’t stand up to the vested interests in this State how do we expect them to stand up to EU pressure.

    But if there’s one thing worse than Enda Kenny, it’s the Public Service Labour Party as the minority party in coalition, gilding the public pension cage as the rest of us fall further in penury.

  • Ian

    “My prediction is Enda Kenny for Taoiseach (g-d help us all) within six weeks of the government being forced to resign after the Lisbon Treaty is resoundingly rejected by the Irish people for the second time.”

    Since Fine Gael also supported the Lisbon Treaty, they should make it clear that they won’t fill FF’s shoes in the event of a second No vote.

    The Republic’s electorate should be made aware that the consequence of a second No vote would be a Sinn Fein Taoiseach.

  • George

    Vote yes or we’ll put Sinn Féin in charge of running the country. That one certainly hasn’t been tried by the yes side yet.

  • Ian


    SF were the only party of any note that opposed Lisbon.

    What’s the logic for Cowan resigning in the event of a No vote if he’s simply replaced by another leader that campaigned for a Yes vote??

  • Ri Na Deise


    We could do with more original thinkers like yourself…

  • Dave

    Ian, there is a bi-partisan policy operating in both Houses of the Oireachtas on Ireland’s membership of the EU which censors all democratic debate on the subject. In addition, 160 of 166 TDs are pro-treaty.

    I agree that you get another party of mindless Europhiles with Fine Gael (and I wish it was not so), but it is a principle that you must punish the government if that government abuses the democratic process. In this example, conspiring with the EU to subvert the freely and fairly expressed democratic will of the people and thereby committing treason against is just reason for said punishment.

    Because this government lacked the honour to resign from office when it supported a policy that the people opposed and thereby remained in office promoting that policy against the expressed will of the people, we now need to amend the constitution so that a government is compelled to resign if it supports a policy that the people oppose. That is needed to avoid the dismal conflict between the democratic will of the people and the undemocratic will of Europhiles.

    As regards a Shinner as Taoiseach, your mother must have rocked your cradle too close to a stone wall if you seriously think that the public wouldn’t be better served by electing lobotomised chimpanzees from Dublin Zoo rather than Angus Snotnose (or whatever his name is) and the rest of that stumblebum ilk who couldn’t win a battle of wits with a Fisher-Price Speak ‘N Spell. I wouldn’t elect folks of that dismal calibre to empty my dustbin never mind run a country.

  • Greenflag

    Ireland will be voting YES next time no question . The NO’s last time were a peculiar combination of extreme lefties and extreme right wingers . Sinn Fein won’t be able to reach out for Herr Haider of the Austrian National Socialist Party as the latter’s committment to personal life style freedoms resulted in him driving a car at 200 kph into a wall following a tiff with his boyfriend . Neither will SF wish to be seen with that other great anti EU hero Monsewer Le Pen or is it Le Pong ? Neither will Ireland be persuaded to vote no by Ex Iraqi War profiteers of the likes of the Libertas shady bunch of neo cons or Mr Cheney’s ‘friends ‘.

  • Greenflag

    Dave ,

    ‘They’re so out of touch with the people ‘

    You are not only not in touch with Irish political opinion re the EU but you’re so far out of touch that you can’t see your right wing from your ultra right wing 🙁 Neither Enda Kenny nor Gilmore will make Taoiseach or Tanaiste .

    Cowen should put his personal political career on the table for this next referendum . After all it was he who was leader of the party and government at the time and he who is responsible for running a lack lustre campaign which allowed a shower of local extreme lefties combine with a shady group of foreign backed neo cons to enable just over a quarter of the electorate to claim the Irish people had voted NO!

  • Dave

    Greenflag, as I recall, you predicted that the Lisbon Treaty would be passed the last time because you “did not know a single person who intended to vote ‘No.'” You got that one wrong too, eh? In addition, try to avoid the negative attacks on personalities and focus instead on the salient issues. Those squalid tactics merely serve to portray Europhiles as desperate scoundrels (even though they have every reason for desperation). The facts are agin you, kid. The Sunday Business Post/Red C poll shows that 71% of Irish voters oppose a second referendum and 62% said they would vote ‘no’ if one is called compared to just 34% who said that they would vote ‘Yes.’

  • paul kielty


    Please take your own advice about..”…negative attacks on personalities…” Ala, your comments about a certain ‘angus snotnose’; very silly!!


    You are obviously unable to understand why a majority of Irish voters REJECTED the Lisbon treaty. If it needs to be spelt out again, the reason for its failure is based on concerns over democratic representation, taxation, neutrality, and to a much lesser degree abortion. Those, besides a feeling that the European project was going far beyond its remit.
    What the Irish people did must be applauded by all democrats throughout Europe, seeing that Ireland was the only ONE to offer their citizens an referendum!!

    The disdain and shame which has been paraded at the feet of europe’s elite by the Irish government simply because the Irish people will not lie down; has been an absolute disgrace. They are so apologetic it is an embarrassment!!
    If a second referendum is what the ‘crawlers’ wish, then bring it on!
    Ireland, as the second biggest NET contributors to the European project, will not be bullied or coerced by Europe’s elites, whether domestic or foreign!
    By the way, why have other so-called democratic nations of Europe, refused to allow their citizens a referendum???

  • George

    which allowed a shower of local extreme lefties combine with a shady group of foreign backed neo cons to enable just over a quarter of the electorate to claim the Irish people had voted NO!

    Abusing those who voted no is not a good way to get them to change their minds.

    And stop this hypocritical rubbish about a quarter of the electorate. The current government was elected by a minority of the electorate but I don’t see you questioning its legitimacy.

    I also don’t see you questioning the legitimacy of all the governments of Europe that have already ratified the treaty because they too were elected by a minority of the electorate.

    It seems only when you vote no are your democratic credentials questioned in Greenflag world.

    Hardly an endorsement for the yes side if that is the attitude towards the results of free and democratic votes.