Denis_Cooper 5pts That weasel Lidington seems to be going right off the rails.http://uk.reuters.com/article/2015/11/05/uk-britain-eu-idUKKCN0SU16N20151105"There is no magic deadline" for the referendum to take place, Lidington said."So does that mean that if it seemed necessary the government would seek to amend the December 31st 2017 deadline set in the referendum Bill which is going through Parliament, as that would only be "legal" rather than "magic"?"We accept that given the timescale we set it's not practical to have a treaty change ratified in that period. We need a promise of future treaty changes as far as they are legally binding and irreversible."I wouldn't expect 27 other countries to finally RATIFY a treaty change before the British people decided in a referendum whether or not the new terms would be acceptable to them. However I would expect any treaty change to have been AGREED and SIGNED by the EU member state governments before the UK referendum took place. Of course if the British people agreed to the new terms in their referendum, but one or more of the other governments then went back on what they had said when they SIGNED the new treaty, or it was rejected by the people of one or more countries when they were asked directly in a referendum, then the deal would be off and it would be back to more negotiations. But going to vote on an vaguely worded and unreliable PROMISE of future treaty change would not be acceptable, however much Lidington and his kind tried to present it as being "legally binding and irreversible" - which of course it would not be.