Why No?

TNS Sofres – Sondages, opinion, etudes : Le r�f�rendum du 29 mai 2005

Why did those that voted No in the French refererendum did so? Did they really object to the one or other part of the Constitutional Treaty?

Not really. A quick poll by the TNS-Sofres opinion polling agency tries to answer why the No’s noted No.

The number one reason (46 %) is the issue of unemployment and a fear that it will rise further. This is, in its essence, the question on whether globalization is a threat or a promise.

The number two reason (40 %) is the situation in the country in more general terms. It’s difficult to see that this has anything to do with the Constitutional Treaty.

The number three reason (35 %) is the alleged possibility of re-negotiating the treaty. Unclear, however, what this re-negotiation should be about.

And the two reasons sharing the number four position (34 %) is that the treaty is difficult to understand and that it is too liberal.

That most constitutional text are rather far from being immediate crowd-pleasers seems to be a point lost, or that the ultimate in being liberal in terms of an open market is really the Treaty of Rome that France signed in 1957 and has been – well, more or less – implementing since then.

I guess that there will be more refined polling and analysis eventually, but these first results are not without their interest.

In the meantime, we are all waiting for the Nethetlands.

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