Final Word from Thursday, June 2, 2005

KDU-ČSL Chair Miroslav Kalousek had a point when he said that both ČSSD and ODS are overreacting to the French No. It's hard to say which of the two parties is being more stubborn. ČSSD sees the French No as a mere complication and wants to change the rules in midstream so the "right" outcome is assured. ODS, in contrast, sees the French vote as a definitive rejection of the constitution and wants to ignore the CR's obligations toward the EU. Foreign Minister Cyril Svoboda (KDU) got it right when he said the CR should wait to see how the EU decides on the issue. If the EU decides to proceed with the ratification process, ODS should probably swallow its pride and agree to a referendum. And ČSSD should probably agree to separate the referendum from the 2006 elections. They might both find that this wins them more popular support than their current behavior. [Czech Republic European Union]


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FS Final Word