To lighten the mood, some people have suggested that David Cameron, who would be the right age, has “Hotel California” by The Eagles on his mind. “You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”
The British conservative government would love a simple checkout option that lets them stay in the E.U. forever, which for London means a single market and a financial passport.
But that’s not how the union feels about it. At least this is the institution’s official position beyond the fissures that have already come to the light during these latest confused hours. On Tuesday afternoon, Cameron was invited to speak at a dinner at the European Council in Brussels. But on Wednesday morning, he skipped the breakfast, which was limited to the remaining 27 countries. The E.U. wants Cameron, attending his final European summit, to clarify London’s actions: That is, when will it activate Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon?
Cameron continues to insist Great Britain wants a “process as constructive as possible” because “naturally, we are leaving the E.U., but we must not turn our backs to Europe. These countries are our neighbors, friends, allies, partners.”