It is not just the government which has some soul-searching to do, the opposition Socialists have also been damaged by the outcome of the referendum.
The leadership opted to back the constitution but that did not reflect the views of all in the party. A number of high-profile members were at the forefront of the No campaign, much to the dismay of leader Francois Hollande. But he said the Socialists should not see the No vote as a problem for themselves. He added the party made a courageous choice, democratically. The drive for the Socialists to reject the treaty was led by Laurent Fabius, a former prime minister. Almost 60 per cent gave the constitution their backing in an internal referendum. A national party conference to be held next Saturday is likely to be a lively affair.