Today in PMQs the following exchange took place:
My right hon. Friend goes to the summit tomorrow. Has he noticed in President Barroso’s blueprint for federalisation of Europe the following sentence: “The European Parliament, and only it, is the parliament for the EU, ensuring democratic legitimacy for the EU”? Does he agree with that or repudiate it, and what will he say to the other leaders at the summit tomorrow?
The Prime Minister:
I agree with my hon. Friend on that one, not President Barroso, for this reason: it is the national parliaments that provide the real democratic legitimacy within the European Union. When we are discussing banking union, it is to this House that we should account. When we are discussing the European budget, it is to this House, which represents our taxpayers, that we should account. I always bear that in mind when I am negotiating, as I will be tomorrow at the European Council.
How can our ‘this House’, that has ceded its sovereignty to the European Union, have any democratic legitimacy left where the governance of our country is concerned? If ‘this House’ is unable to initiate and then implement all the laws necessary for the governance of our country, how can it have democratic legitimacy?
‘This House’ is therefore but an empty shell when considering democratic legitimacy, which makes the act of accounting to it pointless – likewise the presence within it of David Cameron and the other 649.