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Europe

Think Tank to Blair: Stay Away from EU Constitution

A pro-Europe think tank report recommends British Prime Minister Blair let other politicians convince voters to ratify the EU's constitution.

UK Prime Minister Tony Blair could be an obstacle in the campaign to persuade the British people to vote "yes" to the new European Constitution, according to new research. A report by the Foreign Policy Center -- a pro-European think tank -- warned that Blair's credibility, which was severely damaged by the decision to go to war in Iraq, is not strong enough to swing voters across to the "yes" side. The campaign should be led instead by Finance Minister Gordon Brown, along with External Relations Commissioner Chris Patten and pro-European Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy, the FPC said. The think tank unveiled new polling data showing that 65 percent are undecided how they will vote in a referendum on the European Constitution. However, the "no" campaign are well ahead at present, with 50 percent of those already decided saying they would vote no in a popular vote, compared to 31 percent saying yes. (EUobserver.com)

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