Today, the French electorate voted in a Referendum on the EU Constitution. I’m not intimitely aware of the details of the constitution, but I am familiar the French mindset given that I’ve travelled there a number of times and my step-father is a self-proclaimed francophile.
From what I can tell this doesn’t spell the doom of the EU as such. I believe that the French understand that strong Europe that is unified monetarily and economically would be a benefit to them in the long term. However, they have made it clear that the constitution in its’ current form threatens their social network too greatly and must be recreated to address those concerns.
It is interesting that Germany ratified the treaty on Friday. Perhaps this is a function of the lagging German economy and the lingering effects of East and West Germanys’ rough ride to amalgamation.
Whatever happens todays vote is a milestone in the ongoing experiment that has been the EU. There will no doubt be more events to come. But first, we’ll see if Jaques Chiracs government survives this effective vote of non-confidence.