Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2006-12-13-Speech-3-046"

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"Mr President, again and again, and over a period of years, this House, at first cautiously, then – as today – very clearly, has sent out the twofold message that there can be no new enlargement without a working constitution. By enlarging without ifs or buts and with ever-greater haste, we are doing nobody any good; on the contrary, by dividing Member States into two classes by means of derogations, and alienating Europe’s peoples, we imperil that which has already been achieved. Although enlargement is one of the EU's real successes, many people are more and more inclined to see it as a threat, and to counter that we must be opinion formers in the best sense of the word. That is not exactly easy, for a constitution possesses little political sex appeal, nor, to a large degree, can it have any, for it essentially has to do with getting institutions to work better and with getting decisions taken by a majority in public view rather than by means of high diplomacy behind closed doors. It has to do with a financial model that rationally balances functions against the money available for them, and, in many respects, too, with new functions for Europe, even though, even today, very many people already feel that Europe makes itself too much of a nuisance. Even in warm weather, the energy issue has a European dimension to it, and it is an issue we must address together. Let me conclude by saying something about Croatia, a candidate country of particular importance to the country from which I come. Our demand for the Constitution does not mean that we want to stand in the way of Croatia’s accession; the contrary is the case. It is perfectly conceivable that it will join us in 2009 or 2010, provided that the German Presidency manages to breathe new life into the procedure for ratifying the Constitution and reviving the Constitution as an issue. We wish the incoming German Presidency every success in doing that."@en1

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