Coffee House

Why a summit in the pub with Hollande is the last thing Cameron needs today

31 January 2014

31 January 2014

After the week he’s had in the Commons, no-one would blame David Cameron for heading for the pub today. Unfortunately, he’s got François Hollande in tow as he pitches up at a pub in his constituency, and the pair are supposed to be discussing European reform over the pork scratchings.

This isn’t great timing, frankly. The rebellious mood of the Tory party is in part down to a desire from backbenchers for more details of Cameron’s European renegotiation plan – and signs that he’s going to get what he wants too.

Subscribe from £1 per week

A summit with another norther European country might yield more positive noises on this, as Cameron does have allies on the notion of European reform (although not the sort of reform to Britain’s relationship with the EU that his backbenchers want). But France isn’t one of them, and though the Prime Minister will tell the President that the EU needs to be ‘more flexible’, sources close to Hollande have already said this isn’t going to go anywhere.

Incidentally, as part of the fallout from yesterday’s vote, some eurosceptic backbenchers are even more aerated to learn that Dominic Grieve may have been forced to resign had the Raab clause passed (this is an old warning from the whips that was initially applied to the Mills amendment and may simply demonstrate how hopelessly desperate they were). One mutters: ‘This would have been all the more reason to support it.’

More Spectator for less. Subscribe and receive 12 issues delivered for just £12, with full web and app access. Join us.

Show comments
  • failedevolution

    France: The next target?

    mainstream media insist on the “extramarital” affairs of a
    president then probably something is not going well

    • Little Black Censored

      “Dominic Grieve may have been forced to resign had the Raab clause passed…”
      Dot Wordsworth, correct this please.

  • OriginalChris

    EU referendum bill (James Wharton’s) killed off in Lords apparently.D Express and Guido Fawkes

  • Jupiter

    Did Hollande arrive on the back of a motorbike?

  • Mynydd

    Look Frankie I have just come back from China and they are lending me the money for a nuclear power station. So be a good fellow and give me the technology to build it, LOL Dave

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Hi Gordon thanks for running your country into the ground and leaving it with a massive structural deficit, destroying private pension provision, contracting the economy by 7.3%, selling Gold at rock bottom prices to buy euros, signing up to ruinous PFI contracts, a catastrophic bank regulatory system, a huge credit bubble etc etc. My but you did a great job of destroying a key competitor of ours. Glad you aren’t German though you ruinous swine. LOL . Angela.

  • Pier66

    Colonel Mustard, you said “Cameron should be forming alliances with the right in Europe in the cause of liberty not cosying up to communists”, good idea, but could I also thought that as’ doing might lose the votes of moderates in the center of many people who see a shift too bad right … even if the times and the political events of the world may require it

    • Colonel Mustard

      There are no moderates. That is a myth. The “centre ground” is occupied by socialists red in tooth and claw who merely pretend they are moderates. The political spectrum in Britain is polarised and the right is being demonised out of existence. Cameron is more worried about what the “moderates” think of him than his own grass roots because the ‘public’ narrative is almost wholly dominated by the left. The conservative majority is largely silent and the comment is often made that conservatives in the public sector and in education have to keep quiet about their political beliefs because of the opprobrium they would attract from leftist colleagues. Any on the conservative right who try to write against this trend are quickly characterised as ‘far right’ nutjobs and the Daily Mail is invoked.

      A classic example is the wrangle over the 50p tax:-

      “In pure revenue terms, HMRC figures show that in 2011/12 and 2012/13 the amount collected from top income taxpayers was £41.3 billion and £41.6 billion respectively under the 50p rate before jumping to £49.4 billion in 2013/14, when the top rate was cut to 45p.”

      The left ignore this for the emotive braying of getting even with “the rich” which dominates the debate.

  • Hexhamgeezer

    Anonymous tart meets directionless driftwood.

  • Mynydd

    I wonder if François Hollande goes to the toilet will Mr Cameron leave without him.

  • Kitty MLB

    I also completely agree with what the Colonel has said.
    Cameron clings to his leftie ideals and chums regardless of the fact they despise him.
    I always remember reading the Washington Post before the US election,
    they did not know Cameron that well and was surprised he was a Conservative,
    they seem to think he was more like Obama, they swore he was a leftie.
    Honestly, I believe he probably detests those Conservative leaders within the EU
    as much as he does his own party in England.
    To call his wet is a understatement, the man is without any substance.

    • telemachus

      What an utter fantasy
      He supports and promotes the most right wing chancellor since Peter Thorneycroft
      He is dangerous to British health

      • Andy

        It is Ed bollocks Balls and Ed the Pole who are ‘dangerous to British Health’. After the mess they created last time they were in Government the pair of ’em ought to be hanged.

      • Colonel Mustard

        The Song of The Coffee House’s Red Dwarf:-

        Heigh-ho, heigh-ho
        It’s off to tag we go
        We keep on tagging all day long

        Well, we tag, tag, tag, tag
        Tag in our blog the whole day through
        Tag, tag, tag, that is what we like to do

        And it ain’t no trick to get rich quick
        If you’re a champagne socialist p***k

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        By dangerous to British health you mean by reducing the structural deficit as opposed to increasing it a la Ed Balls.

  • 2trueblue

    Renegotiation means what it says. Or does it?

  • Kitty MLB

    Cameron and Hollande might ‘ bond’ over those pork scratchings,
    and that warm ghastly brown stuff that chaps like to drink- speaking
    about politics, how they are misunderstood and not liked
    How are they going to resuscitate the EU dying elephant, that everyone
    wishes to put out of its misery. Hollande will ask after his old chum,
    Milipede who never keeps in touch these days,
    I do not suppose they will mention women though.
    Modern politicians, all of them live in their own little egotistical bubbles
    untouched by reality and principles.

  • Colonel Mustard

    Cameron should be forming alliances with the right in Europe in the cause of liberty not cosying up to communists. This is typical of the man. He is wet and drawn to the left but they still hate him and all he represents anyway.

    • telemachus

      “Cameron should be forming alliances … in Europe in the cause of liberty”
      Yes this is what Europe is about
      Cameron has got Merkel on side
      He now needs Hollande
      With these the others will follow and we will see some sensible negotiations before we move forward together

      • Fergus Pickering

        Nobody needs Hollande. However, common courtesy demands he be welcomed when he comes even if he does not reciprocate.

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          He is a communist like Miliband. What can we expect but deceit and rudeness.

          • Kitty MLB

            No that is quite wrong.
            regardless of the inferiority and atrocious manners of
            Hollande and his fellow countryman,
            the English have quintessentially exquisite manners,
            and as the gentleman above correctly stated
            common courtesy costs nothing and can shame others.

            • telemachus

              But Hollande dealt with the rude discourteous journalist perfectly

      • Colonel Mustard

        Oh, do get lost you tiresome red clown. You infest every thread like an unpleasant rash. March away on your Huguenot trade mission to North Korea or wherever it is, communing with the other communist half-wits of the world about new ways to steal money from those who work for a living to give to those who don’t.

        • Mynydd

          This sort of comment is unbecoming.

          • Kitty MLB

            I am sure your vituperation will be his undoing,
            he shall be a shadow of his former self,
            the Colonel will not recover from your wounding remarks,
            he may have to fall upon his sword.

          • Colonel Mustard

            And you are another one. Begone!

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            As if anything you ever say is worth listening to or anything other than trolling rubbish for the Labour Party.

      • Kitty MLB

        ‘ Cameron has got Merkel on side’
        Well obviously, she would not want one of her biggest piggybanks
        to leave, what if Cameron were to develop a backbone and other
        countries were to do the same- she said The EU must not be allowed to fail, Why ? it already has.
        I am also sure Merkel is being cosy with Cameron because she probably does miss Sarkozy- and so does France.
        Hollande has been a utter failure, the most loathed leader
        in modern times and an example of why socialism is a disaster.
        Telemuchus, you do need to stop being so befuddled and see the light

        • telemachus

          The light will dawn again in May next year

          We will again rapturously trumpet

          “a new dawn has broken, has it not?”.

      • global city

        All you have to do is follow what goes on in the EU parliament and read some of the documents the various committees compile to see exatly how the notion of ‘intergovernmentalism is perceived there. there are constant assertions that ‘we have ome too far, we must never return to the age of intergovernmentalism, for anything’.

        As far as they are concerned you are wrong, utterly, completely, wholly wrong.

        The EU is NOT about forming national alliances, it is about forming political groups. You really have to lose your nationalist thinking when you enter the realms of the EU and become a European. You clearly have not traanscended your nationalist limitations, so you still think that British politicians can work in the national interest, but in Brussels that no longer exists…. in their own words.

    • AnotherDave

      They’re just agreeing a ‘spat’ for the run-up to the May elections, so that they can pretend to their electorates that they’re standing up for UK/France.

    • asalord

      When they down the pints I hope Hollande asks Cameron whether he,Cameron,agrees with his tory chum,Lord Lang.

  • swatnan

    The best advice Francois could give Dave is to get rid of trouble makers like Raab from his Party, otherwise they will bring him down, along with Britain.

    • Andy

      And the best advice Dave could give Francois would be ‘keep your d*ck in your trousers’.

    • Mynydd

      The trouble makers are in No 10.

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        You mean the people who are reducing Gordon Brown ‘s structural deficit.

        • Mynydd

          The people who are reducing the deficit are those of us hardworkingpeople who have saved all our lifes and are receiving a return of less than the rate of inflation.

          • Colonel Mustard


          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            The colonel beat me to it. Tripe. Your too stupid to have a job or savings.

  • AJConstantine

    I do hope that England’s future is not as a member of the EU but while we remain in it, there will be continual friction with other EU members.

    Sadly the British elites still have a closed shop in their grip on Parliament and as there seems no real policy differences between the Tories, Lib Dems and Labour on their continued support for EU membership, we ordinary citizens just have to watch helplessly as the substance of our democracy and sovereignty is shredded by our EU membership.

    • sfin

      No we don’t! Vote UKIP!

    • Mynydd

      Oh for little England, what about Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland don’t they count?

      • Colonel Mustard

        Do you refer to the SNP as ‘little Scotlanders’ you hypocrite?

        • Mynydd

          I am for the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and as such I expect the Prime Minister of the said United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to stand up to the leader of the SNP in a televised public debate and put forward the case for Scotland remaining in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. As it is Mr Cameron is throwing is hands in the air and, saying it’s nothing to do with me, even through he leads a Unionist party.

          • Colonel Mustard

            You are for the Labour party like your comrade telemachus. I doubt very much whether Mr Cameron gives a fig about what the Labour troll Mynydd “expects”.

Can't find your Web ID? Click here