Reverend de Jong voting on the ratification of the proposed EU constitution.

With France voting NO for the ratification of the EU Constitution, a spotlight now follows the current voting on the same issue in the Netherlands. The world is expecting the Dutch to follow suit with the French, although not necessarily for all the same reasons.

The constitution of the EU grants more power to the developing centralized EU government in Brussels. Many fear that this will lead to a diminishing role of their own “state” governments and in turn cause upheaval in local economy and agriculture. The Dutch “no” that is expected results from fear that an EU constitution would further influence the standard of living and the cost of living – both issues that also arose with the replacement of the Dutch guilder with the Euro. Another fear common to all member states in the EU is a loss of personal identity caused by a centralized government. The Dutch want to remain distinctly Dutch, and the French want to remain distinctly French. Finally, there is fear of the de-democratization of the European states as a small political upper class gain more power in Brussels.