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The Danish EMU Referendum 2000: Business as Usual

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 March 2014

Martin Marcussen
University of Copenhagen
Mette Zølner
Department of Intercultural Communication and Management, Copenhagen Business School


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Original Articles
Copyright © Government and Opposition Ltd 2001

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1 The authors gratefully acknowledge the constructive comments and suggestions received from Sven Bislev, Tim Knudsen, Hans Jørgen Nielsen and the anonymous referee of the journal.

2 ‘Når jeg ser et rødt f lag smælde’, text by Oskar Hansen, music by Johs. Madsen, year unknown.

3 Carlsen, H. N., Jackson, J. T. R. and Meyer, N. I. (eds), When No Means Yes, London, Adamantine, 1993.Google Scholar

4 ‘Vi har vundet, sejren er vor!’, author and year unknown.

5 ‘Snart dages det brødre’, text by U. P. Overby, music by Chr. Jos. Rasmusssen, year unknown.

6 Nielsen, Hans Jørgen, EF på valg, Copenhagen, Columbus, 1993 Google Scholar; Nielsen, Hans Jørgen, ‘The Danish Voters and the Referendum in June on the Maastricht Agreement’, in Kelstrup, Morten (ed.), European Integration and Denmark’s Participation, Copenhagen, Political Studies, 1993, pp. 365–80Google Scholar; Siune, Palle Svensson, Karen and Tonsgaard, Ole, Det blev et nej, Århus, Politica, 1992 Google Scholar; Svensson, Palle, ‘Folkeafstemningen den 18. maj 1993’, in Petersen, Nikolaj and Thune, Christian (eds), Dansk udenrigspolitisk årbog 1993, Copenhagen, DJØF’s forlag, 1994, pp. 98126 Google Scholar; Worre, Torben, ‘Folkeafstemningen om Maastricht-traktaten 2. juni 1992’, in Petersen, Nikolaj and Thune, Christian (eds), Dansk udenrigspolitisk årbog 1992, Copenhagen, DJØF’s forlag, 1993, pp. 112–32Google Scholar; Worre, Torben, ‘First No, Then Yes: The Danish Referenda on the Maastricht Treaty 1992 and 1993’, Journal of Common Market Studies, 33:2 (1995), pp. 235–57CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Worre, Hans Jørgen Nielsen, Torben and Andersen, Jørgen Goul, ‘Tre studier af Maastricht-afstemningerne’, Institut for Statskundskab, University of Copenhagen, 1993 Google Scholar. An interesting new trend in the Danish EMU-referendum is that the town-versus-country, north-versus-south, east-versus-west cleavages with regard to European integration have disappeared. The year 2000 No vote was equally distributed in all parts of the country.

7 Mette Zølner, Re-imagining the Nation, Brussels and Berlin, P. I. E.-Peter Lang, 2000; Eckstein, Harry, ‘Case Study and Theory in Political Science’, in Greenstein, Fred I. and Polsby, Nielson W. (eds), Handbook of Political Science, Vol. 7, Strategies of Inquiry, Addison-Wesley Publishing Company, 1975, p. 108 Google Scholar. Formulating probability probes is an exercise in establishing educated guesses about causal relations.

8 Similar to the concept ‘the significant other’ are the concepts ‘the affective other’, ‘the generalized other’ or simply a ‘reference group’. Within the area of social psychology, a ‘significant other’ signifies a heterogeneous social group whose imagined value systems, attitudes and/or behaviour constitute an important element in the studied object’s (in this case the Danish population and Danish political elites) external environment and therefore serve as a basis for action.

9 Marcussen, Martin and Roscher, Klaus, ‘The Social Construction of “Europe”: Life-Cycles of Nation-State Identities in France, Germany and Great Britain’, in Stråth, Bo (ed.), Europe and the Other and Europe as the Other, Brussels and Bonn, P. I. E.-Peter Lang, 2000, pp. 325–58Google Scholar; Zølner, Mette, ‘Remembering the Second World War in Denmark: The Impact of Politics, Ideology and Generation’, in Stråth, Bo (ed.), Myth and Memory in the Construction of Community. Historical Patterns in Europe and Beyond, Brussels and Berlin, P. I. E.-Peter Lang, 2000, pp. 351–74.Google Scholar

10 Hansen, Lene and Wæver, Ole (eds), Between Nations and Europe: Regionalism, Nationalism and the Politics of Union, London, Routledge, 2001.Google Scholar

11 Bo Stråth (ed.), Europe and the Other and Europe as the Other, op. cit.

12 ‘Ja med omtanke.’

13 Eurobarometer, 51, Fig. 1.5b, 1999.

14 ‘Danskerne mere europæiske end nogensinde før’, Politiken, 2 October 2000; Andersen, Jørgen Goul, ‘ØMU og demokratiet — aspekter af det “demokratiske underskud” i EU’, in Dosenrode, Søren von (ed.), Danmark og ØMU’en — politiske aspekter, Århus, Systime, 2000, pp. 110–47Google Scholar; Hoff, Jens, ‘Euroen og EU’s demokratiske underskud’, Universitetsavisen, 14, 2000, pp. 1617 Google Scholar; Ugebrevet Mandag Morgen, ‘Danskere mere europæiske end nogensinde’, 34:2 (October 2000), pp. 19–24.

15 Hans Jørgen Nielsen, ‘The Danish Euro-Referendum September 28, 2000’, brief for the Institute for Public Policy Research, London, 20 September 2000.

16 Martin Marcussen, ‘Ideas and Elites: Danish Macro-Economic Policy Discourse in the EMU-Process’, PhD thesis, ISP 226, Aalborg, Department of Development and Planning, 1998; Marcussen, Martin, Ideas and Elites: The Social Construction of Economic and Monetary Union, Aalborg, Aalborg University Press, 2000.Google Scholar

17 Olesen, Thorsten B. and Laursen, Johnny, ‘Det Europæiske Markedsskisma 1960– 72’, in Laursen, Johnny et al. (eds), Danmark i Europa, 1945–93, Copenhagen, Munksgaard, 1994, pp. 93160 Google Scholar; Rüdiger, Mogens, ‘Stagnation, 1973–1979’, in Laursen, Johnny et al. (eds), Danmark i Europa, 1945–93, Copenhagen, Munksgaard, 1994, pp. 161–94Google Scholar; Rüdiger, Mogens, ‘Denmark Against the EC’, Berlingske Tidende, 14 11 1999.Google Scholar

18 Bille, Lars, ‘Politisk Kronik, 1. halvår 2000’, Økonomi og Politik, 73:3 (2000), pp. 7980.Google Scholar

19 Katz and Mair refer to the ‘Party Board’ as the ‘National Executive’: Katz, Richard S. and Mair, Peter, ‘Changing Models of Party Organization and Party Democracy. The Emergence of the Cartel Party’, Party Politics, 1:1 (1995), pp. 528.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

20 DI (Danish Industry) press release after the referendum on the Amsterdam treaty, 28 May 1998: ‘For industry it is particularly important that Denmark becomes a member of the EMU in order to harvest the advantages resulting from the common currency and the single market.’ Finansrådet(Danish Bankers’ Association) press release 5 October 1999: ‘— it is satisfying that the Prime Minister in his opening statement to Parliament clearly supports Danish participation in the EMU and the common currency, the Euro.’

21 Civil servants in the Ministries for Finance, Economic Affairs, Industrial Affairs and Labour. Interviews conducted by Martin Marcussen in the period January—June 1999.

22 Aktuelt, 25 November 1998, p. 9: ‘Only Two LO-Leaders are Against Full EMU-Membership’; Aktuelt, 5 January 1999, p. 3: ‘Organized Labour is Ready for EMU-Membership — Referendum Better Sooner Than Later’; Aktuelt, 30 October 1999, p. 7: ‘Broad EMU-Support Amongst the Leaders of Organized Labor’; Børsen and Politiken, 29 December 1999: ‘LO-Boss Recommends Danish Yes to EMU.’

23 Aktuelt, 16 March 1999, p. 8: 53% of LO-members would vote Yes in case of a referendum about Denmark’s full participation in EMU, whereas 38% is against EMU-membership.

24 47% of the LO members wish to vote No to EMU, whereas 42% will vote Yes. LO, ‘Vælgernes holdning til den Økonomiske og Monetære Union’, LO Dokumentation, 30 March 2000, Copenhagen, Landsorganisationen. See also ‘Secret Poll: LO-No to Euro’, Politiken, 12 April 2000.

25 The figures refer to the number of seats that the individual parties occupy in the Danish parliament, the Folketing, out of a total of 179 seats.

26 Økonomi og Finansministeriet, Danmark og Euroen, Copenhagen, April 2000.

27 Commission of the European Communities, ‘One Market, One Money — An Evaluation of the Potential Benefits and Costs of Forming an Economic and Monetary Union’, European Economy, 44 (October 1990).

28 DUPI, Udviklingen i EU siden 1992 på de områder, der er omfattet af de danske forbehold, Copenhagen, May 2000.

29 DØR, Dansk Økonomi, Copenhagen, Spring 2000.

30 DØR, Markedsperspektiver og strukturproblemer, Copenhagen, October 1971; DØR, Dansk Økonomi, Copenhagen, December 1988; DØR, Dansk Økonomi, Copenhagen, November 1992; DØR, Dansk Økonomi, Copenhagen, Spring 1997.

31 Lars Calmfors, Sverige och EMU, SOU 1996:158, Stockholm, Finansdepartementet, 1996.

32 17 May 2000, 24 August 2000 and 6 September 2000.

33 LO, Beskæftigelse og fælles mønt, Copenhagen, Landsorganisationen, 1999.

34 ‘LO: ØMU-nej koster 35.000 job’, Berlingske Tidende, 11 April 2000.

35 LO, ‘Vælgernes holdning til den Økonomiske og Monetære Union’, LO Dokumentation, 30 March 2000, Copenhagen, Landsorganisationen; ‘Hemmelig måling: LO-nej til euro’, Politiken, 12 April 2000; LO, ‘Euro-målinger er til internt brug’, Politiken, 13 April 2000.

36 ‘HK-leder: drop euro-kampagne’, Aktuelt, 25 April 2000; ‘Tillidsmænd er euroskeptiske. Modstand mod LO-kampagne’, Aktuelt, 27 April 2000; ‘Hardy Hansen: Nej til Euroen’, Aktuelt, 27 April 2000.

37 ‘Kun Dansk Metal kaster penge i aktiv Ja-kampagne. Fagforbund holder lav ØMUprofil’, Aktuelt, 26 April 2000; ‘LO siger Ja. LO trodser f lertallet af medlemmer og siger Ja til euroen’, Aktuelt, 29 April 2000.

38 Notat fra Udenrigsministeriets juridiske tjeneste, JT.3,400.P/JUR, 4 March 2000; ‘Nyrup: vi kan komme ud af ØMU’en igen’, Politiken, 28 February 2000; ‘Nyrup: Vi kan altid komme ud af Euroen’, Berlingske Tidende, 23 March 2000.

39 ‘Ingen vej ud igen’, Aktuelt, 13 May 2000.

40 ‘EU vil ikke garantere dansk ØMU-fortrydelsesret’, Politiken, 9 July 2000.

41 ‘Forskere punkterer myter om velfærdsstatens død’, Aktuelt, 21 August 2000.

42 ‘Regeringen garanterer folkepension’, Berlingske Tidende, 16 September 2000.

43 ‘Kolde SF-skulder til Nyrup’, Berlingske Tidende, 19 September 2000.

44 ‘Fogh: Nyrup skader ja-siden’, Berlingske Tidende, 19 September 2000.

45 ‘Ikke større frihed ved et Nej. Danmark vil følge Euroen’, Aktuelt, 25 August 2000.

46 Pengemagasinet, DR-TV1, 13 Sept. 2000.

47 ‘Topchef: Nej til ØMU’, Politiken, 26 August 2000.

48 ‘PR-folk: Ja-siden har tabt’, Information, 22 September 2000.

49 ‘Skræmmekampagne ultra light’, Information, 22 September 2000; ‘Lykketoft klar til stramninger’, Berlingske Tidende, 22 September 2000; ‘Ny strategi i euroslutspurten’, Berlingske Tidende, 22 September 2000; ‘Ja-front varsler indgreb ved nej’, Berlingske Tidende, 25 September 2000; ‘Fogh mener nej medfører skattestigninger’, Berlingske Tidende, 27 September 2000.

50 Tim Knudsen, ‘Præsident Nyrup’, Information, 9 November 2000, p. 12.

51 Examples of ‘strong and popular ministers’ in that regard are: Minister for Agriculture (Henrik Dam Kristensen, since 22 February 2000, Minister for Social Affairs) in the case of salmonella; Minister for Economic Affairs (Marianne Jelved) in the case of tax-free sales; Minister for Environment (Svend Auken) in the beer-can case; and Minister of Industrial Affairs (Pia Gjellerup, now Minister of Finance) in the case of state-subsidies to shipbuilding in East-Germany.

52 An example of a perceived ‘weak and increasingly unpopular minister’ in that regard is Prime Minister Poul Nyrup Rasmussen himself who did not protest when the Portuguese Presidency in February 2000 demanded a common EU-stance against the Austrian government consisting of a coalition between Conservatives and the Freedom Party. In this case, the Liberal-Conservative opposition attempted to make a link between the allegedly ‘dubious’ common EU action against the new Austrian government and the allegedly ‘f lawed credibility’ of the Prime Minister.

53 DØR, Dansk Økonomi, Copenhagen, Autumn 2000; Danmarks Nationalbank, Kvartalsoversigt, 4. kvartal, Copenhagen, November 2000. Økonomiministeriet, Økonomisk Oversigt, Copenhagen, December 2000.