Looking at the British political scene today, David Cameron is in a very strong position. His own party has rarely been happier with him. His coalition partners, despite being the most pro-European party in British politics, are standing by his decision to use the veto. What Liberal Democrats keep stressing is that the British government was not actually asking for that much and that Sarkozy’s behaviour left Cameron with little option but to wield the veto.
Labour are in good spirits today. But they don’t have an answer to the question of what they would have done in the early hours of this morning. Instead, they are saying that they wouldn’t have started from here — hardly a persuasive position.
But the challenge for Cameron will come when the 17-plus-six use their voting weight to force through something that is detrimental to Britain’s interests. At that point, the whole question of whether the current terms of Britain’s membership are a good deal will arise.