Green Party members have criticised David Cameron’s approach to the EU renegotiation with European Council President Donald Tusk.
The Prime Minister discussed the proposals which included ‘emergency brakes’ on EU migrants claiming tax credits and a ‘red card’ to block any unwanted EU laws.
While members on both benches of parliament receive the news with a degree of scepticism as they questioned the Prime Minister over the proposal on Wednesday, Green Party candidates question the motives behind the move.
London Assembly candidate, Rashid Nix, believes Cameron is simply ‘posturing’ over the issue and playing to the media and believes the government are not in a great position when criticising the democratic nature of the EU.
The film-maker said: “Personally, I think it’s rather ironic that a government elected by 24% of electorate is complaining of the EU being undemocratic .
“It’s really interesting that as a much as he is doing his posturing, he is still getting heavily criticised by large sections of the so-called establishment right-wing press.
“Last week when they had the deal with Google – here is a company which is one of the largest corporations in the world worth £300bn – they worked out a deal with HMRC in which they are paying corporation tax at a 3% rate.
“Yet that was not such a huge issue. We are more concerned with people coming to this country and receiving tax credits which are going to be miniscule to the tax liabilities of major corporations.
“For me the idea of EU migrants not receiving tax credits, and they are working, goes against the principles of natural justice.
“If they are coming here to work and the money they are being paid doesn’t amount to the basic living costs they have to top up. The government has been subsidising big businesses for years anyway and we should be really clear about that.
“Tax credits when you actually look at it, tax credits actually subsidise big business. When you think about it, it allows employers to pay low wages and get away with it. When you flip it on its head it doesn’t work in favour of the worker, it works in favour of the employer.”
Meanwhile, Green Party’s London Mayoral Candidate, Sian Berry believes that there is a need for reform but within the institutions, not where Cameron is focussing his negotiations on.
“The fact that you have these slightly faceless commissioners who initiate all the legislation – half the work that is done with the legislation is done behind closed doors with the commissioners before it is even published and that is very untransparent,” she said.
“We do need to see more power given to the elected representatives in the parliaments and to see less legislation being controlled by the commission for example.
“There are lots of problems with the MEPs in Europe. We have lots of Green MEPs in Europe who have problems to persuade the other MEPs not to follow the line of the lobbyists from the big manufacturers and the big companies and big banks.
“So we do have a lot of issues with Europe within the Greens but we think it’s a force for good in general. For example, the air pollution in London the only reason we have any action being taken is that there is legislation at a European level that says the UK has to.”
Picture courtesy of the Green Party, with thanks