Media Section

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PRESS RELEASE - 11 Juy 2005


No counter balance to French and Dutch no vote

On Sunday, 10 July, 56.5% of Luxembourg’s voters said “Yes” to the EU Constitution. The high turnout of nearly 86.8% is due to the compulsory voting in Luxembourg. What are the conclusions to be drawn from this result?

Conclusion No 1 - No counter balance to French and Dutch no-vote

In Luxembourg 12,620 voters made the difference between the yes and the no result (1). "With all due respect to the Luxembourg voters, to celebrate this result as a counter balance to the French and Dutch no vote is yet another ridiculous attempt to spin reality", says ENC Coordinator, Thomas Rupp.

For instance Karel de Gucht, the Belgian Foreign Minster, said that France and the Netherlands must be made to vote again. “We can create a climate in which the treaty could finally be adopted in France and the Netherlands. We have to proceed with a second vote.” (2)

Conclusion No 2 - The result was interfered with by a “Yes for Juncker”

Fact 1 - Participation in the referendum was compulsory. Therefore the turnout was so high. Fact 2 - Three weeks ago a poll made by the ILReS Institut showed that nearly 90% of Luxembourg’s citizens wanted their PM Jean-Claude Juncker to have MORE influence in politics. Fact 3 - Juncker announced resignation after a possible no-vote.

If you consider the impact of the combination of these three facts you could come to the following conclusion: "Many people who may not have made up their minds about the EU Constitution or did not care about the EU Constitution went to the referendum because it was compulsory and just said 'YES to Juncker'", claims Rupp.

Conclusion No 3 - Juncker’s strategy inhibited a democratic decision on the subject

Many people who were against the EU Constitution voted yes “with their fists in the pocket” because they did not want Juncker to resign. "Juncker’s strategy to connect the result of the referendum with his political fate", so Thomas Rupp, "was a strategically genius step and for him a calculated risk but it caused real damage to democracy."

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(1) In Luxembourg 56.52% voted yes at a turnout of 86.8% and 223,000 registered voters. According to these figures: 193,564 voters actually had a say 56.52% of them make 109,402 who voted Yes. The 50% threshold was crossed with 96,782 voters. The difference is 12,620 voters.

(2) The Times, July 09, 2005