I have been patiently labouring away in the comments fields of Liberal Democrat Voice about the nature of a constitution versus the EU Reform Treaty.
It was therefore with a shower of relief and delight that I read James Graham making the same point with great authority and clarity:
But is Nick Clegg correct to insist that an in or out referendum is the closest we have to the promised referendum on the Constitutional Treaty? Abso-bloody-lutely.
Because the whole point of the Constitutional Treaty was that it was a “delete all, replace with” process. It was a Year Zero approach to reforming the EU. Lisbon, at the insistence of the Euro-sceptics, is not; it is an amending treaty. That being the case, the EU’s constitution is the body of treaties going all the way back to Rome. If you want a referendum on the EU’s constitution, you have to have a referendum about that.