Well, this was almost certain to happen. After almost every national citizenry in Europe was denied a chance to vote on the new Lisbon treaty — a kind of stripped-down version of the European “Constitution” that was rejected a few years ago in referendums by the French, Dutch and others — the one electorate that did get a clear shot at the Lisbon treaty has rejected it.
We know what this was going to mean when it was a hypothetical — François Fillon, the French prime minister, said “there would be no Lisbon treaty” if the Irish reject it. But that’s intolerable to European leaders because they hate to have their handiwork ruined by mere citizens. Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy are to respond jointly soon. I’ll keep a transatlantic eye on things.