Sir Menzies Campbell knows he will never be Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, but he fancies that there is just a chance that there might be a hung Parliament come the next election and he knows that, as a Pensioner, such an event presents the only opportunity he will ever have of being in Government and the prize he covets is the post of Foreign Secretary in, preferably, a Labour Government, for his distaste for the Tories has always been self-evident. How else can one explain his abject abjuration of the word ‘Democrat’ in the title of his wretched party as evidenced by his dishonourable abandonment of the promise that he and his party made at the last election:

We are therefore clear in our support for the constitution, which we believe is in Britain’s interest – but ratification must be subject to a referendum of the British people.

The Old Buffer has told the fanatically EuroPhile Financial Times (here) that:

the new EU reform treaty was “sufficiently different” from the original constitution to avoid the need for a plebiscite. He said the only case for a public vote would be on a much broader “in or out” question about Britain’s membership of the EU, to prompt a serious national debate on Europe.

Sir Menzies Campbell thus joins a small coterie of Labour Ministers in the Big Lie to the effect that this is a quite different treaty in substance from that upon which the promise was given, notwithstanding that every other European politician of note says it is, in essence, the same old Constitution. Sporting the letters Q.C. after his name, he is better placed than many of his fellow Britons to understand the nature and effect of the Constitution Mark II, but by saying it is ‘sufficiently’ different, one must wonder if, like Ken Clarke and the Maastricht Treaty, he has actually read the documents. Zimmerman continues, however, to hedge his bets, preferring to wait until the final text is available, apparently, before coming to a final decision on the matter.

If anyone doubts that the LibDems are hanging their hopes on a hung Parliament may disabuse themselves of the notion by contemplating the Old Codger’s musings in the Guardian (here) about his hopes for a Coalition.

Here is the rank smell of political opportunism at its very worst. First he wishes not to offend Gordon Brown, liar and British Prime Minister, lest that dishes his hopes of a invitation to the Cabinet in the event of a hung Parliament. But he also hopes that, by the time a final text is agreed, Brown will have been forced to concede a referendum in any event, thus getting him neatly off the hook of being seen to oppose the British people having their chance to give or to withhold their whole-hearted consent to the Constitution. He also calculates that, if Brown gets away with it the latter will be endlessly grateful to his fellow Scot and this will produce even more seats in a Coalition than might otherwise have been the case. This is about power and the chance of getting LibDems into government for the first time since 1945. Thus they would betray the Independence of the United Kingdom in exchange for the chance to stand thereafter at the Westminster Parish Pump (for that is all it will be worth after the Treaty comes into force). The irony is, that if the Treaty does get through, there will not be much for a ‘Foreign Secretary’ to do as our foreign policy will be a matter for the EU Foreign Minister. But then again, if his chums in Brussels think he was the man who saved Gordon’s bacon, what better retirement present than the post of EU High Commissioner for Foreign Affairs?

There must be a fair chunk of LibDem MPs who will think this is not such a good idea: the harm it will do to their ‘democratic’ credentials in seats they hold and seats they would like to hold, especially in England, may be substantial, given the polls which indicate a huge majority in favour of holding a referendum.

But we should also pay attention to the Old Boy’ sub-text. This is his assertion that if there is to be a referendum, it ought to be about the wider issue of the principle of British membership of the EU. They believe that thus they can frighten the British public into agreeing the treaty: if you do not sign your country away, then you might find yourself outside the Euro Pale. Well, we are not going to fall for that.

As a lawyer Campbell ought to have a well-developed sense of honour. Sadly for base personal political motives he has left truth and honour at home and so our Nation must be sacrificed to the Liberal Democrat’s ambitions and lust for power, power even at the price of our independence. They ought to de deeply ashamed of their ant-democratic stance.

I am not, however, holding my breath.