Geoff Hoon the rather pointless fellow that presumes to represent us in Europe was wandering round the Strasburg Parliament in small circles yesterday. Every few seconds he looked at his Blackberry, obviously desperate that his spad, por somebody wanted tro get hold of him. They didn't. A veteran hack, one Jim Gibbons who remembered him as an MEP, seeing his lack of stuff to do, hailed him,
"Geoff, what are you doing?"
Hoon's response was priceless,
"Absolutely nothing, just being here".
It appears his press team were desperate for him not to be interviewed turning down requests left, right and center.
However later in the afternoon he was spotted mooching in the big courtyard by two Scottish TV types,. They also hailed him, asking him what he was doing.
"Oh just taking some air", was his response.
They asked for an interview and he delightedly gave them a few minutes.
Something rather odd going on there.
On another point, something he did reveal to one MEP is that the FO is drawing up an official contribution to the Future of Europe debate (ie what to do about the European Constitution), that we expect to be published before Christmas. The general tone of the dociument appears to be get everything done that doesn't need an IGC (Intergovernmental Conference) and then put together a slim version of the Constitution that can be passed through Parliament, after all it is so unimportant that no referendum would be required.
The British government's position would be followed first by Sarkozy, then by Merkle in the run up to the big shindig they are planning 25th March in Berlin to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Rome.