Truth be told, I think that he is trying to walk a tight rope. A large majority of the Tories, and (if polls are correct) most of the rest of the country, are inclined to favor an exit from the EU, so he's attempting a number of things:
- He wants to take the wind out of the sails the right wing nativist UK Independence Party, which is on a path to reduce the Tories' Liberal Democrat coalition partners to 4th place and irrelevance.
- He wants to pacify his own right wing.
- He wants to put Labor leader Millibrand in the position of supporting the EU which is an unpopular position.
It is understood that Merkel, the only EU leader who has been calling for a revision of the Lisbon treaty to underpin new governance arrangements for the eurozone, has given up on the idea of a major treaty revision for the moment.(emphasis mine)
The German chancellor is said to have decided it is fruitless to push for a treaty revision in the face of strong opposition from France and elsewhere. Instead she has decided to try to stabilise the eurozone by setting up what are described as "work streams" in three areas. These cover banking union, the subject of the last EU summit where Cameron won guarantees for Britain; greater fiscal co-ordination among eurozone members; and labour market reform across the EU.
If I lived in the EU, the idea that the Germans, who have no statutory minimum wage,, and a long history of dubious treatment of immigrants, would be driving "labor market reforms" it would fill me with dread. It translates into f%$#ing the ordinary working bloke.
Of course, David Cameron is a member of the Conservative party, so "f%$#ing the ordinary working bloke", is kind of an article of faith for him.
I still maintain that the real problem with the EU is German hegemony in the EU, because they have much like the Bourbon Kings, "They had learned nothing and forgotten nothing."
In the lame poodle category, Cameron is saying that the US has given its permission for him to ask for this.
Britain's "special relationship" with the US looks increasingly like a relationship between a prostitute and a pimp.