In the name of “solidarity” French president Jacques Chirac has called (scroll down to “EU BUDGET/BRITISH REBATE”) on the United Kingdom to give up the European Union budget rebate that Mrs. Thatcher insisted on to reduce the gap between what Britain pays into the EU budget and what Britons receive. British prime minister Tony Blair told him to shove it. M. Chirac had called on the British to make a “gesture,” to which Mr. Blair responded:
“Britain has been making a gesture because over the past 10 years, even with the British rebate, we have been making a contribution into Europe two-and-a-half times that of France. Without the rebate, it would have been 15 times as much as France. That is our gesture.”
Those awful Brits. First they decline the munificent offer of the French president to have them pay fifteen times as much as France pays into the EU budget, and then,
Some in France at least are beginning to blame Britain for killing off the treaty after the UK announced that it was delaying its planned referendum.
The French voters turned the EU constitution down, but…it’s those awful Brits who are to blame if it’s binned.
French President Jacques Chirac has called on Britain to “make an effort” over the EU budget, amid an escalating row about the UK’s rebate.
“Make an effort” = “give more money to my constituents.”