France

EU Related Referendums

Apart from the European Economic Community enlargement referendum in 1972, France have held two EU-related referendums: on the Maastricht Treaty in 1992, and on the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe, held in May 2005. In the referendum in 2005, three three different camps can be distinguished (Ysmal, 2006): a 'yes' camp, consisting of the UDF, the majority of the UMP and the majority of the PS, arguing that the charter would make the EU more democratic; a 'no' camp, the 'souverainists' (National Front, de Villiers's supporters and a part of the UMP), who did not support the EU and pointed out that the Treaty would undermine the sovereignty of the Member States; and a second 'no' camp , mainly leftist, ranging from the Trotskyist extreme left to the dissent Socialists via the Communist Party and various movements acting against economic globalization.

On the election day, only 45.33 percent voted in favor of the Constitutional Treaty. Several factors contributed to explain the 'no' outcome. Some pointed to the dissatisfaction with the Raffarin government, others pointed to the skepticism to the enlargement of the EU and fear of putting the welfare systems at risk (Ysmal, 2006).

Referendum on the Ratification of the EU Constitution, 2005. NUTS 2

Sources

Ysmal, C. 2006. France. European Journal of Political Research, Vol 45 (7-8), 1104-1109.

Ministry of the Interior: Election results.