British Prime Minister, David Cameron, refused to apologize for last week’s veto of a European Union treaty on Wednesday during a heated exchange with the leader of the opposition in the House of Commons.
Labor Party leader, Ed Miliband, appealed to Cameron to reveal his next moves and any plans to secure a more favorable deal.
“In the cold light of day, with other countries spending the weeks and months ahead trying to see if they can get a better deal for themselves, isn’t the sensible thing for him to do to re-enter the negotiations and try and get a better deal for Britain?” said Miliband.
The Prime Minister made no apology for his refusal to budge over the treaty and instead asked the leader of the opposition what he would have done.
“First of all, I make no apologies for standing up for Britain. I think, in the last two days we’ve read a lot about my opinions, we’ve read a lot about the deputy prime minister’s opinions, the one thing we don’t know is what would the right honorable gentlemen have done?” said Cameron.
Describing the treaty veto as a “catastrophic mistake,” Miliband said – along with rising unemployment – the outcome of the EU summit indicated that Cameron was a poor leader.
“Now, here is the truth, last week he made a catastrophic mistake, this week we discover unemployment at its highest level for 17 years. Mr Speaker, this Prime Minister thinks he is born to rule, the truth is he’s just not very good at it.”
All the EU’s member states except Britain agreed at the summit to back a new compact on tighter enforcement of budget rules among the 17 countries that share the euro, a move to help restore confidence in the public finances of the currency bloc.
Bottom line: Britain, which is not in the euro, blocked a deal to enshrine stricter discipline in the EU treaty, forcing Germany and France to strike a looser agreement among 26 of the EU’s 27 states via what is known as an intergovernmental treaty.