The head of the main EU centre-right grouping has predicted the demise of the European Conservatives and Reformists. It would be "humiliating" for David Cameron.
In what would be a “humiliating” reversal for David Cameron, the head of the main centre-right grouping in Europe has predicted the demise of the Conservative leader’s European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) – a group described as being “exotic … [and containing] characters with disturbing ideas about gays and Jews”.
In an article in New Europe, Antonio Lopez-Isturiz, secretary general of the European People’s Party (EPP), predicted that the Czech Civic Democratic Party (ODS) would leave the ECR and join the EPP. The ODS are the third largest party in David Cameron’s “sexist and Islamophobic” grouping. Their former Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek has recently resigned as Chairman of the party after being filmed making disparaging remarks about “gay” and “Jew” colleagues.
The loss of the nine ODS members would leave the ECR on a knife edge “with the minimum requirement of members from seven states, five of which have a solitary MEP”. The loss of of only one further MEP would mean that the ECR would be wound up under EU rules.
In the interview, Lopez-Isturiz criticised David Cameron’s sidekick in Brussels, Daniel Hannan MEP:
“I hope David Cameron will make the pragmatic choice. I don’t understand how EU affairs was left to Daniel Hannan.”
Lopez-Isturiz went on to heap praise on, “pro-Europe Tories, such as Lord Brittan, Lord Patten and Shadow Business Secretary, Ken Clarke, describing them as ‘brave’ in standing up for Europe.” He also set out how Cameron’s EU policy was damaging the British Conservative party’s relationship with their allies in the United States:
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[He said] that there was an important Trans-Atlantic aspect, as “John McCain told him to join the EPP”, and remaining outside the group would rupture the Tories links with the US Republican Party, and he added, “The position of Britain as a bridge between the US and Europe is now destroyed. There is a new one that is enlarged between Washington and Brussels, now we have a direct connection.”