International

No taxation without representation!

The anti-Europeans are up in arms about the possibility that all European Union citizens legally resident in the UK might be given the chance to vote on the introduction of the common currency in any future referendum.

I have no idea as to whether this is likely to happen or not but this is being spun as if it is a piece of outragous vote-rigging when in fact it would merely follow basic democratic principles.

Firstly the idea of EU citizens having voting rights in countries other than their birth is not new. If, for example, Peter Cuthbertson was a resident of Rome he would have the right to vote in elections for the Rome city council and for provincial and regional elections, as well as Italian elections to the European parliament. He could even stand as a candidate for an Italian party for those bodies (I wonder which one he would choose?)

Given that Peter would be paying his taxes to the Italian state and helping finance local, provincial and regional government it seems right and proper that he be given the chance to have a say in how that money is spent. No taxation without representation?

The same, of course, also applies in the UK – EU citizens legally residing in the UK are entitled to participate in local and county council elections, as well as vote for the European parliament.

Article 19 (8b) ECT gives all citizens of an EU Member State the right to vote and stand as a candidate in elections to the European Parliament and local elections in the Member State in which they reside — whether they have its nationality or not — in the same conditions as apply to nationals of the country of residence. (Taken from the European Parliament Factsheet)

There is nothing in the above about referendums but given that the question asked in any poll would directly effect all EU citizens you have to ask why the anti-Europeans want to deny them their rights?

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