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Bill Cash MP calls for "full referendum" and welcomes David Cameron reasserting primacy of Westminster legislation over European Communities Act

Press release 04/11/09

Bill Cash still insists that we must a full referendum on the European question because the British people have been denied one since 1975 and a referendum is needed in order to secure a vote to ensure that the democratic wishes of the electorate are the basis on which we are governed – as he said in his press statement of Monday 2nd November.
However, Bill Cash is extremely glad to hear that David Cameron has effectively endorsed his continuing campaign for many years to reassert in the national interest the primacy of Westminster legislation in principle over the European Communities Act 1972 and therefore the Lisbon Treaty, which consolidates all the Treaties.
The European Communities Act was a voluntary Act passed by Parliament and does not and must not be allowed to usurp the sovereignty and supremacy of the United Kingdom Parliament on which the democratic wishes of the British electorate are founded. Where under existing European law, such as the Social Chapter, the overregulation of business and the City of London, the areas of immigration, fisheries and the Common Agricultural Policy and in other areas of European policy-making, the European system of Government undermines vital British national interests.
This new statement by David Cameron would open the door to effective renegotiation despite majority voting and unanimity where our vital national interests were concerned. This is a major step forward in an association of member states, for which Bill Cash has campaigned for the last decade and more.
1. See the pamphlet: Bill Cash (2000). Associated, Not Absorbed. See:
2. See Bill Cash’s speech in the House of Commons on 27th February 2008: “The answer to the hon. Gentleman is simply this: the kind of Europe that he describes is not the kind of Europe that I witness. Although I have, for example, been in favour of enlargement—I never said otherwise—my problem, having voted yes in 1975 and, although I have now repented, having also voted for the Single European Act, is with the European Union as it is constructed. I do not have a problem with the kind of Europe that Winston Churchill advocated in his famous speech in Zurich in 1946, saying that we should be “associated but not absorbed”. I believe in an association of nation states working within a loose co-operation that enables us to form alliances, but not within a centralising, European Court of Justice-dominated, supranational arrangement.”
3. On the European Union (Amendment) Bill, passing the Lisbon Treaty in the UK Parliament, Mr. Cash’s New Clause 9 on 5th March 2008 said: “Notwithstanding any provision of the European Communities Act 1972, nothing in this Act shall affect or be construed by any court in the United Kingdom as affecting the supremacy of the United Kingdom Parliament.” The same clause was applied on the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill in 2006.

In Parliament

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  • European Council | Commons debates
    Does my right hon. Friend appreciate the anger that her abject surrender last night has generated across the country? Having broken promises 100 times not to extend the time, she knows what I am...