Socialist Worker

Workers reject neoliberal EU treaty in Irish referendum

Issue No. 2105

The neoliberal European Lisbon Treaty has been thrown out by the Irish voters as counting continues.

With 29 of 43 constituencies declared, the campaign for a no vote is leading by 53.5 percent to 46.5 percent. All but six constituencies have rejected the treaty.

Ireland was the only country to hold a referendum on the treaty. The campaign for a no vote won significant majorities among the urban working class and in rural areas in particular.

All the established parties in the Irish Republic backed the treaty. The Labour Party backed it as did some trade unions and the Green Party was split on the issue, with their government ministers campaigning for a yes vote. The bosses organisations spent millions campaigning in favour of the treaty.

Activists from the left and the anti-war movement have held rallies across the country and delivered leaflets to millions of homes.

As a spokesperson for the No campaign put it, “The Irish people have spoken. Contrary to the predictions of social and political turmoil, we believe that hundreds of millions of people across Europe will welcome the rejection of the Lisbon Treaty.

“The proposals to further reduce democracy, to militarise the EU and to let private business take over public services have been rejected. Lisbon is dead. Along with the EU Constitution from which it came, it should now be buried.”

“This vote shows the gulf that exists between the politicians and the elites of Europe, and the opinions of the people. As in France and the Netherlands, the political leaders and the establishment have done everything they could to push this through – and they have failed.”

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Fri 13 Jun 2008, 16:22 BST
Issue No. 2105
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