The fate of the eurozone could be in the hands of Irish voters after the Attorney General recommended that a referendum should be held on the EU’s latest fiscal compact treaty.
Enda Kenny told the Dail this afternoon that “on balance” a referendum should be held. He added that he and his deputy prime minister Eamon Gilmore were confident the Irish people would endorse the EU treaty as this is in the country’s interest.
Irish voters threw the EU reform programme into chaos when they first rejected the Lisbon treaty – although after a series of amendments the treaty was later accepted on a second vote.
Unlike the last two previous Irish referendums on the Lisbon Treaty , a veto wouldn’t sink the treaty, because it only requires support from just 12 of the 17 euro countries to take effect.
The vote “will give the Irish people the opportunity to reaffirm Ireland’s commitment to membership of the euro,” Enda Kenny said
There are fears within the Fine Gael/Labour coalition that voters might use the Fiscal Compact Treaty referendum to punish the government over its cost-cutting austerity programme and the household charge .
More about The Fiscal Treaty Here