• A commentary on David Cameron’s claim to campaign for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU by the economist Tim Congdon.

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    The front page of The Daily Telegraph today has a story that Prime Minister Cameron would campaign for the UK to withdraw from the EU if the proposed renegotiation does not achieve its objectives.

    This is not a surprise, and Cameron is not to be believed or trusted.

    One of Mark Reckless’ main reasons for defecting from the Conservatives to UKIP was that he had stopped trusting Cameron. His suspicions were inflamed at a Tory MP ‘away day’ in December last year, where a question to Cameron about the cost of the EU resulted in ‘a furious row’ and ‘a bit of a scene’. (I am quoting a story in yesterday’s The Mail on Sunday.)

    My main point is to refute the claim that a ‘tough-talking’ Cameron has ‘cut the EU Budget’. He has done nothing of the sort.

    The EU Budget process and expenditure management are out of control, and this country’s net and gross contributions to the EU Budget have soared under the Conservative-LibDem coalition.

    Official data show that in 2013, the net cost to the country of its payments to EU institutions was almost £13 billion, more than double that in 2009. (being, of course, the last full calendar year before the coalition came to power.)

    Tim Congdon.