Daniel Hannan resigns from European Parliament post

Daniel Hannan, the Conservative MEP, has resigned as European legal spokesman only two months after taking up the post in protest at his party’s stance on the Lisbon Treaty.

By Chris Irvine
Telegraph [UK]
05 Nov 2009

Mr Hannan, a leading Eurosceptic, became the Tory spokesman on legal affairs in the European Parliament in September.

But last night on his Telegraph blog, Mr Hannan, the Conservative MEP for South East England, said he would be returning to the back benches in order to campaign for direct democracy that will see power in the hands of individual citizens.

Mr Hannan’s resignation comes as David Cameron said he could not longer consider holding a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty now that it had been ratified by all 27 European Union countries.

He has instead decided to concentrate on clawing back some EU policies and never again allow powers to be passed to Brussels without a vote in Britain.
In his blog, Mr Hannan argues that the issue of referendums goes beyond Europe and the Lisbon Treaty.

“I want open primaries, popular initiative procedures, elected sheriffs, self-financing councils, an end to quangos, recall mechanisms and, yes, referendums – lots and lots of referendums,” he wrote.

Mr Hannan, whose withering attack on Gordon Brown in which he likened him to a “Brezhnev era apparatchik” became an internet hit, added: “We need a broad movement within the Conservative Party that will push for referendums, citizens’ initiatives and the rest of the paraphernalia of direct democracy.

“I don’t just mean a referndum on Europe – though, naturally, that is the obvious place to start. I mean full-on Helvetic people power… I have returned to the back benches in order to concentrate on building such a movement.”

The article continues here.

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