On 31 October the Government was defeated in Parliament on an amendment from a right-wing Tory MP calling for the EU budget to be cut.
The Government’s line is that the budget should be frozen, and the odds are that it will do a deal with Germany to keep the increase small.
The parliamentary vote does not bind the Government, but has embarrassed it and further inflamed differences between the Tories and the Lib-Dems.
Labour MPs, including left-wing ones, voted solidly for the amendment.
If the vote had brought the Government down, then those tactics would make sense. But it was nowhere near that.
Socialists have no brief for any capitalist budget. But some shift of public spending from national to EU level is necessary to win our demand for a levelling-up of workers’ rights and conditions across the EU.
It is also necessary for any policy which would mobilise European resources to help, rather than worsen, Greece’s crisis.
The bad effect of Labour’s EU vote in strengthening nationalist anti-EU demagogy outweighs all positive effects.