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Chicken Run in the EU Parliament (20.02.2008)

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20 February 2008 The European Parliament votes on the so-called Mendez de Vigo/Corbett Report which endorses the Treaty of Lisbon What the European Parliament is engaged in here today, with this debate and subsequent vote, is nothing less than a massive exercise in deceit. A pack of lies are being told and they're being told because you do not want the peoples of Europe to have the referendums that you promised them. It is the imposition of the will of the political class upon the citizens. We all know the truth, which is that the Lisbon Treaty is the same as the EU Constitution. Exactly the same number of new competences. Exactly the same number of surrenders of veto. It is virtually identical in every regard and it is constitutional because it gives the European Union a full legal personality, but, worse still, gives it the ability to amend itself in the future without having to refer to more intergovernmental conferences. It gives the EU the ability to legislate over literally every single aspect of our lives. I am told, though, that I should not worry, because the flag and the anthem have been dropped. Well, pull the other one! There is a great big flag in front of us here. It is nonsense. It is all part of the lie. The truth is that you are too chicken to have a referendum. You do not want to hear the voice of the people, and now you resort to totalitarian means to get this Treaty through. We heard Danny Cohn-Bendit say that those who oppose this Treaty are mentally ill. We heard Mr Schulz say that those of us who objected to the sheer dishonesty of this project were behaving like Nazis back in the 1930s. Well, I think the ordinary decent citizens of Europe will make up, will work out for themselves who the extremists are. I must say that I wish the people of Ireland, I wish to those who believe in democracy, every success in a couple of months’ time. And I hope they send out a large resounding ‘no’, and I hope the voice of the peoples of Europe will be heard, not that of just you, the political class. And you ou may be complacent today, but you are increasingly being held in contempt. Sarkozy’s mini-treaty will now be around 3 000 pages instead of the 560 pages in the rejected Constitution. The majority has the right to endorse the Treaty, but you have no right to refuse normal parliamentary scrutiny of this Lisbon Treaty. I have asked more than 700 serious questions on the interpretation of the different articles. You do not know the answers. You approve secrecy instead of transparency. You approve a reduction in parliamentary democracy instead of insisting on this Parliament’s right to represent our voters, scrutinise on behalf of our voters and question the executive on behalf of the half a million citizens we represent. Thank you, Mr President. Well, it's evening, it has been a very long day. We have been protesting in this parliament, as you know, for months against the Lisbon Treaty - the Constitution being pushed trough without the referendums that previously people were promised. But it all came to ahead today, because today was the day we actualy debated the Treaty and voted on the Treaty. And it will be no surprise to you that a very massive majority of this European Parliament voted to approve the Treaty. The Majority in the House rejected Amendment 34, calling for a referendum in every Member State Majority even shot down Amendment 32, which read: "The European Parliament undertakes to respect the outcome of the referendum in Ireland." As everyone voted, the vote is closed. 499 against - that's 'rejected'. We, of course, protested - up against this and the and the theme for the day was that they were too chicken to hold a referendum so in the Chamber the UKIP MEPs all wore these T-shirts saying "Too chicken for referendum" and outside we had some staff who were also protesting. And at one point during the protests the staff have been surrounded by security guards and press cameras and I was asked to come out and see what was going on. And I went out, and yeah, it was getting a bit heated, it was getting a bit agressive... But if I was to say, we were demonstrating in favor of constitution, They'd be in the bloody Chamber. And applaud it. But why the rules apply differently to us? Don't wear chicken costumes anywhere near the EU anymore. Noone's gonna rest 'till we... ...have you seen the Treaty? ... No. ...not yet, they will be. In Britain you can protest... you can protest with any issue like it in parliament and its fine. You can wear deathmasks and protest against nuclear energy, all of thats fine. But if you criticise the European Union and want referendums in Member States on this Treaty, they will fine you, they will arrest you... In the middle of this, one of the veteran correspondents, who has been here for 20 years, a man with the name Jim Gibbons, who does clips and outtakes for ITN network across the country, interviewed me and asked me what was going on, and I said that the treaty was going trough and that they would begin to behave in totalitarian manner. That we have been accused of being mentally ill. We have been accused of behaving like nazis. And this from people who call us the extremists. That was the interview and you would'v thought it was fine As I turned my heels and walked away, the head of the European Parliament's Audio Visual Service turned to this veteran journalist and said: "I don't want you to use that clip, Parliament Services, meaning the cameramen, are not here to record dissent." It was a deliberate attempt to censor what was put out from this place. Now fortunately a senior correspondent from the BBC was close at hand and she said, well if that is how they behave if they're gonna regulate our input, the BBC will withdraw from the European Parliament. Well, since that time, it's been a climb-down and the Audio Visual Unit have apologised and said, that they simply over-reacted in the heat of... ...but if you criticise European Union and in particular, if you criticise them for breaking their promises not to put this Constitutional Treaty for a referendum, you get treated badly. These people have been carded off, we've got members there who will be tommorow fined and suspended from the Chamber. There is no opposition at all. Frankly, they are using totalitarian... Security was also tight around staff from the GUE/NGL group (European Left) who were alse calling for referendum ...I notice that many of them were absent from the debate for long periods, because they were outside the Chamber dressed as chickens. I think that is very symbolic. They are chicken, because they chickened out of the debate here, as they are afraid of the verdict of this democratic debate. Too chicken for a refendum? Well, I would tell you this: What I have seen in this place, I think it was about last few months, they are becoming totalitarian in their instincts. They cannot abide, they cannot bear opposition of any kind. It looks like we're gonna be denied a referendum, I am afraid, of this Constitutional Treaty, which means what we will do as a party is to get ourselves ready for the European elections in the June next Year, which may be the only opportunity we will ever get, to send a message. Sign up for a REFERENDUM on the Lisbon Treaty

Video Details

Duration: 9 minutes and 20 seconds
Country: Belgium
Language: English
Producer: europarl
Director: europarl
Views: 347
Posted by: on Jun 24, 2009

20 February 2008
Nigel Farage,
Strasbourg parliament building

The European Parliament votes on the Mendez de Vigo/Corbett Report which endorses the Treaty of Lisbon on behalf of the Constitutional Affairs Committee.

The Report rejects calls for referendums on the Treaty and amendments in that direction were voted down by the Majority, including Amendment 32 which called for the Irish referendum result to be respected by the European Parliament.

This video includes interventions of that day by MEPs Nigel Farage (UKIP leader) and Jens-Peter Bonde (Danish June Movement), both Co-chairs of the Independence/Democracy Group in the European Parliament.

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