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Irish Voters Reject Lisbon Treaty, Threaten EU Future

Irish voters have, as expected, voted down the so-called “Lisbon Treaty,” which would have made several significant changes to the way the European Union is governed. Ireland was the only country in the EU to leave the decision of whether to accept the Lisbon Treaty to the voters, and Ireland’s prime minister says there won’t be a second referendum to try to change the result. “The people have just spoken,” he said. “My focus is on respecting the decision they have made. It is now my job to discuss with my European colleagues on how we will proceed in the light of this decision.”

The treaty was to amend existing EU treaties to, proponents say, make the EU run more efficiently. Some elements of the Lisbon Treaty were to create a more significant European Parliament, a new European president position, and a new foreign minister position, and it required the ratification by all EU member countries in order to take effect. But despite the Irish vote of 53.4% against it, European Commission president Jose Manual Barroso thinks there is still a chance the treaty can be brought back to life and some other EU nation leaders are trying to find a “legal arrangement” to work around the Irish no vote.

While some are clearly dealing with angst over this vote – including wringing hands over the future of the entire EU – some are having a bit of fun with it. BBC’s call-in program “World Have Your Say” even asked people to submit their own “killer Limerick” to commemorate the occasion.

For more about the Irish rejection of the Lisbon Treaty, see this article in the Telegraph.