Here he is in a letter in the Yorkshire Post today,
THE Conservative high command is clearly involved in a concerted damage limitation process over the growing Euroscepticism displayed at the party conference in Manchester.His delusion about the strength of the Euro seems to know no bounds, but that isn't what disturbs me, and to be frank saddens me. It is the voice of a man deeply entrenched in his anecdotage,
This disguises a potentially momentous shift in which the UK would slip into an EU hinterland while the core countries develop a deeper relationship around a strengthened euro.
I recall a lengthy call to my mobile from Hague – I was at Brussels Airport waiting for a plane – in which he demanded that I sign up to a “Never to the euro” pledge. He had persuaded the leaders of the other Parliamentary groups, Scottish, Welsh, Lords etc to do so and he insisted that I – then leader of the Tory MEPs – now sign. I refused, objecting that to rule out membership in principle was absurd, even if I was not then in favourWhat we want isn't first or second class status at the level of the EU, our ambition is not so lowly.
Hague’s positioning towards the 120 or so Eurosceptic Tory backbenchers who last week inaugurated their campaign for “localism”’ (that is, repatriation of powers from the EU) was to say that membership was not “career suicide”: hardly helpful to Cameron, who dreads his Right-wing.
The group’s leader, George Eustice, was once a Ukip election candidate. How long before Cameron faces reality over the euro and faces down his Ukip tendency, who are full of passionate intensity for a referendum? And what is the deal he now offers them? Second class membership of the EU for Britain. That is not in the national interest.
What we want, what we believe we can achieve and what with hard work and self-belief we will regain is first class status in the world. Trading freely and holding our heads up high as a beacon for freedom, tolerance, liberality and economic confidence and success.
Within the confines of the EU straightjacket we would forever have second class status. Even Germany that trading behemoth cannot sit at the top table of the WTO because of its membership of the EU.