Mr Rasmussen wants a referendum to reverse all but one of the opt-outs Denmark was grudgingly given when the country was told to vote again over the Maastricht Treaty in 1992.
Venstre party head and former prime minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen (V) said today that Denmark should remove the opt-outs on EU defence and justice co-operation that were introduced when Denmark signed the Maastricht Treaty that created the European Union in 1992. The third reservation on becoming part of the euro common currency would remain in place.There are, however, complications. The present government had intended to call a referendum on the opt-outs but decided against it as the Prime Minister, Helle Thorning-Schmidt (in private life Mrs Stephen Kinnock though they seem to spend very little time together) thought there were too many tensions and uncertainties within the EU. Or, in other words, the people of Denmark might once again vote the wrong way.
That problem has not gone away.
But despite a large backing in the parliament to remove some of the EU opt-outs, people may vote differently.Even that is not exactly a huge majority, given the usual propensity of referendums to tend towards the status quo.
A survey by the Danish Greens Analyseinstitut earlier this year showed there is still a large majority (62%) against the euro and that a just 39 percent wants Denmark to join EU justice policies.
The defence opt-out is the exception, with 55 percent happy to scrap the measure.
So what is Mr Rasmussen playing at? Does he think popular opinion will magically change by next May? Or is he being Machiavellian: calling for a referendum that will go in favour of keeping the opt-outs?