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Don’t know? Vote no!

Ireland's "no" vote had little to do with the EU. But one way or another, the treaty will be enacted

The Irish referendum result—like the French and Dutch results in 2005—was not a rejection of the treaty of Lisbon. The outcome tells us almost nothing about views of Europe. Instead, it tells us a lot about referendums.

Polling evidence suggests that the Irish public, as in France and the Netherlands, overwhelmingly support the substantive content of the Lisbon treaty. (The only real controversy in Ireland was over small-country “voice” in voting weights and the number of commissioners.) This is why every political party in Ireland, except for one wing of Sinn Féin, supported it.

The treaty essentially ratified the status…

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