June 3, 2010
With all that is surprising us in the world of politics, my mind looks back at 1984.
The French proposed Claude Cheysson as president of the European Commission. Margaret Thatcher vetoed the appointment and supported the candidature of Jacques Delors, in the mistaken belief that he was an economic liberal and more likely to steer the EU in the right direction, ie her direction.
To complete the coup, the British Prime Minister nominated (Lord) Arthur Cockfield as Commissioner, in the confident belief that he would put a brake on European integration.
Thatcher’s odd couple then forge ahead with single market, but also social and environmental legislation, with the famous 1985 Internal Market White Paper and the Single (European) Act of 1986. The rest is, as they say, history.Author : Stanley Crossick