Media Section

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PRESS RELEASE – 2 June 2005

They knew exactly
what they were voting against

Yesterday, 61.6% of Dutch voters said “Nee” to the EU Constitution. The decision was backed by a turn-out of nearly 62.8%. This was an incredibly clear statement of the citizens of Holland against the proposed EU Constitution, which cannot be ignored by the Dutch government.

Polls show real reasons for a ‘no’
The Dutch vote was a clear vote against an elitist Constitution. And it was a clear vote in favour of Europe. The latest TNS polls give three main reasons for the Dutch to say no: One, they do not want to lose influence in the EU; two, as a small country they want keep their identity and control over their own affairs; and three, they feel the integration process - with the Constitution coming shortly after EU enlargement – is going much too fast.

More control over Brussels needed
“It is outrageous how the political leaders are trying to devaluate the result of the Dutch referendum by declaring that the Dutch people voted on the wrong issue”, says Thomas Rupp, coordinator of the European No Campaign (ENC). “The Dutch voters knew exactly what they were voting against. Instead of giving more power to Brussels we need more control over Brussels. That is what the Dutch voters understood. These kinds of reforms are not included in the proposed Constitution.”

Leaders are politically bankrupt
The Dutch and the French ‘no’ are a big defeat for the political elite. According to the Nice Treaty the Constitution is dead and still the European leaders are trying to find creative solutions to push through their ‘baby’. “The politicians have to learn their lesson and that is: No more integration without involving the people,” says Rupp. “They have to realise that their idea of proceeding is not accepted by the people, their logic does not work.”

What we need now
“What we need is a bottom-up process that includes the citizens from the beginning,” Rupp concludes. “What we definitely won’t accept is any sneaking in of the Constitution or bits of it by the back door, for instance via ‘Nice 2’ or a ‘Constitution-lite.’”


“The politicians have to realise that their idea of proceeding is not accepted by the people, their logic does not work.”says ENC coordinator Thomas Rupp