Chirac counts on jungle tribes to swing EU voteHat tip to Kledo:
Chirac counts on jungle tribes to swing EU vote
Britain has the Pitcairn islands and the Dutch have West Indian Curaçao, but these cannot compete with the impressive French portfolio of dominions around the globe from the Pacific to the Amazon jungle. Their 1.4m voters could swing the result in the closely fought May 29 French referendum on the European Union’s constitution and determine the future of Europe. The Wayampi do not know him but excitement was building last week at the prospect of playing their part in the politics of the palan isi lena, or the “land of the white man”, as Europe is known. Many speak only rudimentary French and have little understanding of qualified majority voting, but an election is always a welcome occasion for a gathering in this alligator-infested corner of French Guiana in South America. But how free and fair an election will they hold in the Amazon? Or, for that matter, in the Wallis and Futuna islands in the Pacific, where three kings rule by fiat? So narrow was the victory of the “yes” camp in the 1992 referendum on the Maastricht Treaty, which paved the way for the euro, that it prompted unsubstantiated rumours of skulduggery in the overseas territories. Suspicions arose partly because the “yes” vote there averaged 70%, far higher than in France.