Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-07-10-Speech-4-185"

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"Mr President, Mr President-in-Office of the Council, your basic orientation has my full support. I believe you are the right President-in-Office at an extremely sensitive time, with the necessary sensitivity to people’s concerns and the determination to lead and reconcile. When you were answering the questions, you did not pass the buck, and you called a spade a spade. You do not run away, but face up to things. I should particularly like to emphasise your strong commitment to parliamentary democracy. This commitment is particularly important in these times because, in several Member States – including my home country, Austria – we have been experiencing the playing off of direct democracy against parliamentary democracy and thus the incapacitation in European matters of parliaments in parliamentary democracies. Let us stand together for parliamentary democracy and against its incapacitation. It is also important to me that you have directly addressed the cowardice or, it could be said, the double standards, of many governments and members of governments in relation to their shared European responsibilities, as these double standards are one of the main causes of the lack of trust and mutual finger-pointing to which we must put a stop. We do not require everyone to be bolder, but we do require everyone to be honest and principled. I should like to touch on three more issues. The first is your position on the Treaty. You are not like a rabbit caught in the headlights, you are not waiting for Ireland, but are continuing the ratification process whilst approaching Ireland. I firmly believe that we shall come to an arrangement with Ireland only after all the other 26 Member States have ratified the Treaty. However, we must not leave Croatia out on its own. I welcome your commitment to opening all the chapters by the end of the year. We also need a timetable for Macedonia. I would ask the Council to also take a decision on the Small Business Act at its December Summit, as the main competences lie with the Member States. We need legal binding and not just another public political statement."@en1

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