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Murray Hunt

Biography Murray Hunt is the Director of the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law. He has a lifelong interest in the ways and means by which the values a society considers fundamental attain and keep a special normative status, how that special status can be reconciled with a commitment to representative democracy, and how to get practitioners and theorists to talk to each other about these questions so that practice is informed by theory, and theory informed by practice. From 2004 to 2017,…

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Oliver Garner

Biography Dr. Oliver Garner is the Brexit Research Fellow at the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, British Institute of International and Comparative Law. He holds a B.A. in Jurisprudence from the University of Oxford, and an LL.M. in Comparative, European and International Laws and a Doctorate in Laws from the European University Institute (EUI). His Ph.D. thesis analyses the constitutional mechanisms for Member State withdrawal and opt-outs from the European Union. His work has been…

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United Kingdom Internal Market Bill: A Rule of Law Analysis of Clauses 42 to 45 (updated for Report Stage)

Executive Summary This Report sets out in brief the Bingham Centre's Rule of Law analysis of clauses 42 to 45 of the UK Internal Market Bill, to inform the consideration of those clauses by the House of Commons at the Bill's Report Stage on Tuesday 29th September. The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland candidly admitted, before the Bill's introduction, that these clauses breach international law. However, the Government now claims differently. It seeks to argue that the clauses…

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A Barrier against the new incoming tide? The UK Internal Market Bill and Dispute Resolution under the Withdrawal Agreement and the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland (23 September update)

This piece is cross-posted with the kind permission of the UK Constitutional Law Association blog. The piece originally appeared on 17 September 2020 . This version has been updated in light of developments, and feedback received on the original version. The author is grateful to Steve Peers and Andrew Chapman in this regard. Brexit déjà vu On 14 September 2020, the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill ('UKIMB' or 'the Bill')  passed at Second Reading in the House of Commons. The…

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United Kingdom Internal Market Bill: A Rule of Law Analysis of Clauses 42 to 45

Executive Summary  This Report sets out in brief the Bingham Centre's Rule of Law analysis of clauses 42 to 45 of the UK Internal Market Bill, to inform the consideration of those clauses by the House of Commons in Committee of the Whole House on Monday 21st September.  In clauses 42 to 45 of the Bill, the Government is asking Parliament to legislate in deliberate breach of the UK's international obligations. The Bill would authorise future breaches of international law by ministerial…

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Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill: A Rule of Law Analysis

Executive Summary The Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill will end freedom of movement for EU citizens. Although the broad policy thrust of the Bill is clear, there is a conspicuous lack of detail. This undermines the Rule of Law value of legal certainty. Parliament is being asked to sign a blank cheque, leaving it to the Government to fill in the details later. The inclusion of very broad Henry VIII powers allowing the Secretary of State to make regulations…

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Written evidence submitted to the House of Commons Committee on the Future Relationship with the European Union: The EU-UK Joint Committee

This written evidence  has been re-published on the Bingham Centre website with the kind permission of the House of Commons Committee on the Future Relationship with the European Union. Executive Summary The key tasks that the Joint Committee and the Specialised Committees need to execute before the end of the transition period are determining the criteria for the functioning of the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, implementing the citizens' rights provisions of the Withdrawal…

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Brexit, Delegated Powers and Delegated Legislation: a Rule of Law Analysis of Parliamentary Scrutiny

Brexit has reopened long running debates over the impact of delegated powers and delegated legislation on Parliament's role in the legislative process. The legislative process in Parliament enables parliamentarians to hold the government to account for proposed changes to the statute book, to amend bills and to decide whether a government bill should be enacted. The government's reliance on delegated powers and delegated legislation to deliver Brexit has raised concerns that parliamentarians…

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The EU-UK Future Relationship and the Rule of Law

Executive Summary The EU and the UK have begun negotiating their future relationship. The two sides disagree over the structure of the agreement(s), the legal form of any commitments to maintain common standards, and dispute resolution. Each of these disagreements highlights the unprecedented nature of these negotiations: this is the first time the EU has negotiated an international agreement with a state after it has withdrawn from the EU through Article 50 TEU . The condensed…

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The EU-UK Future Relationship and the Rule of Law

On 9 March 2020 the Bingham Centre hosts the event 'Divergence and alignment: The Rule of Law implications of the future relationship with the EU' . This Comment piece sets out the key themes. The EU and the UK have begun negotiating their future relationship. The two sides disagree  over the structure of the agreement(s), the legal form of any commitments to maintain common standards, and dispute resolution. Each of these disagreements highlights the unprecedented nature of these…

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Consult beyond the usual suspects to renew the constitution

The Prime Minister has delivered on his General Election promise of "getting Brexit done". Having completed one totemic mission, he must now salve tensions that have been exposed by Brexit. The Queen's Speech contained a pledge to establish the Constitution, Democracy and Rights Commission to "develop proposals to restore trust in how our democracy operates". This is a tough ask. If this Commission is going to deliver then the Government should make sure that it is set up to empower citizens…

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The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill and the Rule of Law

The general election on 12 December 2019 has fundamentally changed the political dynamic driving the Brexit process. The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill (WAB), which will become law before 31 January 2020, has been substantially revised (from the version which was presented in October 2019) to reflect this Government's approach to Brexit. The Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law has published a report  that looks in depth at some of the main Rule of Law issues in the WAB. This…

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The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill and the Rule of Law

The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill (WAB) is a Bill of paramount constitutional importance. The aim of this report is to examine a number of Rule of Law issues raised by the WAB. This report uses the Rule of Law checklist adopted by the Venice Commission in 2016 to inform its analysis of the WAB. These Rule of Law standards provide a guide to the core elements of the Rule of Law, for which consensus can be found amongst the 47 States of the Council of Europe. The Venice…

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The infringement action against the UK for failing to nominate a new Commissioner

The further extension  of the UK's membership to 31 January sees the UK remain a Member State beyond the re-scheduled date of 1 December for the new Commission to assume office. This has prompted the incoming Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to request the United Kingdom Prime Minister to nominate a Commissioner. On 13 November the United Kingdom informed  the European Commission that it would not appoint a new Commissioner before the national General Election on 12 December.…

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A majority government will not guarantee constitutional stability

In UK general elections, the main political parties campaign to convince the electorate that they are deserving of a stable majority in the Commons. A stable majority is a pre-requisite to be able to deliver, via legislation, the policies promised in their manifestos. In this general election, each of the main parties are promising that they would use a majority to enact significant constitutional change to deliver their Brexit policies. In the Brexit context, this has led to a narrative that…

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The ‘Brexit’ Parliament 2017-19

Amidst the sound and fury of the general election campaign, Dr Jack Simson Caird takes a step back to assess how the 'Parliament of two halves' contributed to the Brexit process The 2017 Parliament was brought to an end with the Prime Minister citing parliamentary opposition to Brexit in justification of an early general election. Parliament's role in the Brexit process has been a focal point of political debate since 2016, culminating in the 'People vs Parliament' narrative which is now…

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Why the new Speaker may not always be able to play a straight bat

On 4 November, the House of Commons elected Lindsay Hoyle to serve as Speaker, following the resignation of John Bercow. It has been treated as accepted wisdom that a different approach to the Speakership is called for. However, Bercow has taken decisions about the Commons' handling of Brexit in circumstances where several - or all - of the available choices were potentially controversial. Jack Simson Caird argues that his successor might therefore find that trying to 'play a straight bat'…

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The new Irish Protocol could lead to the indefinite jurisdiction of the EU Court of Justice within the UK

The United Kingdom will hold a General Election on 12 December 2019. The result may determine whether Boris Johnson's renegotiated Withdrawal Agreement that removed the Irish backstop comes into force. One issue that has not been as prominent in the debate is that the new Irish Protocol could lead to the indefinite jurisdiction of the Court of Justice of the European Union within the United Kingdom.  The new Protocol  on Ireland/Northern Ireland in the Withdrawal Agreement between…

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No Deal Brexit, Business and the Rule of Law

The profound changes that would accompany a No Deal Brexit will transform the legal environment in which business operates, from changing the terms of trade relationships in Europe, to the structure of regulation and the content of laws. This paper explores the consequences for the Rule of Law for Business from these changes, by drawing on the perspectives of experts from the Bingham Centre's business network and other Brexit experts. Our interviews revealed that the search for certainty…

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Why the UK’s demands on the Irish Backstop would undermine the EU legal order

Introduction The UK Government and the European Union are renegotiating the Withdrawal Agreement. The former seeks the removal of the 'Irish Backstop' on the basis of its 'undemocratic character' which it claims infringes upon the sovereignty of the United Kingdom. The European Parliament has passed a resolution that it will not consent to any Withdrawal Agreement without an Irish Backstop, in direct contravention to the UK's position. The Prime Minister has asked the European Council President…

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The Supreme Court and Parliament: The Constitutional Status of Checks and Balances

There have been two competing visions of the constitution battling it out since the Brexit referendum in 2016, which David Howarth described on this blog  as the Whitehall view and the Westminster view. The Whitehall view is that the UK constitution, and the relationship between Parliament and Government in particular, is designed to allow the Government of the day to deliver its promises to the electorate. Parliament's role is to scrutinise how those promises, as well the everyday decisions…

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Our democracy will be enhanced by the Supreme Court’s prorogation ruling

The fact that the Supreme Court is scrutinising the legality of a decision taken by the prime minister is unusual. For some observers, its role this week in the latest Brexit drama is a sign that things have gone wrong with the UK constitution: judges should stay out of politics and stick to the law. The problem with this view is that it is premised on a rigid and outdated dichotomy between a "political" and a "legal" constitution. That crude distinction fundamentally misunderstands the dynamic…

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Let’s not divide the Supreme Court into Leavers and Remainers: the need for a better understanding of our judiciary has never been greater

On 24 September 2019 the UK Supreme Court found unanimously that the Prorogation of Parliament was unlawful. The Judges have already been subjected to attacks on social media by the 'Leave.EU' campaign resorting to the notorious 'Enemies of the People'  headline used by the Daily Mail in 2016. Before the judgment Jan van Zyl Smit (Senior Research Fellow and Acting Deputy Director of the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law) argued that we should not divide the Supreme Court into Leavers…

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Process of discovery

What Brexit has taught us so far: with Parliament standing prorogued, the Commons Speaker gives a robust defence of Parliament's role as a check on executive 'malpractice' and pledges all the 'procedural creativity' necessary. On 12 September 2019, John Bercow MP, the Speaker of the House of Commons, delivered the Annual Bingham Lecture , entitled 'Process of Discovery: what Brexit has taught us (so far) about Parliament, Politics and the UK Constitution' to a packed Middle Temple Hall.…

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The Benn-Burt Extension Act: A roadblock to a No-deal Brexit?

Introduction: Extension and the Rule of Law On 9 September, the EU (Withdrawal) (No.2) Act 2019   ('Benn-Burt Extension Act') received Royal Assent. The Benn-Burt Extension Act imposes a statutory duty upon the Prime Minister (if the relevant conditions are met) to request and accept an extension of the withdrawal negotiating period under Article 50(3) TEU. However, the Prime Minister has repeatedly stated  that he will not request such an extension, ostensibly in clear conflict…

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Weekly Update

On 12 September, the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Rt Hon John Bercow MP gave the Sixth Annual Bingham Lecture in Middle Temple Hall. The Speaker's Lecture was titled: 'Process of Discovery: What Brexit has taught us (so far) about Parliament, Politics and the UK Constitution'. The Speaker's lecture was live streamed and footage is available here . The lecture was covered by the Guardian, ITV news, the BBC, the Huffington Post and the Financial Times. The Speaker's lecture…

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Sixth Annual Bingham Centre Lecture

Sixth Annual Bingham Lecture Event - Tags Share Links    Event Details The Sixth Annual Bingham Centre Lecture:  'Process of Discovery: What Brexit has taught us (so far) about Parliament, Politics and the UK Constitution' Date: 12 September 2019 Time: 18:00-19:00 (registration from 17:30), followed by a drinks reception Venue: Middle…

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Sixth Annual Bingham Lecture

On 12 September, the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Rt Hon John Bercow MP gave the Sixth Annual Bingham Lecture in Middle Temple Hall. The Speaker's Lecture was titled: 'Process of Discovery: What Brexit has taught us (so far) about Parliament, Politics and the UK Constitution'. The Speaker's lecture was live streamed and footage will be available on our website in due course. The lecture was covered by the Guardian , ITV news , the BBC , the Huffington Post  and the…

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Brexit and the UK Political and Constitutional Crisis: Prorogation and the Case for Constitutional Reform

The Government's decision to prorogue Parliament on 9 September (the Brexit Prorogation) has exposed an uncomfortable truth: the UK constitution does not provide strong legal limits on some of the executive's most constitutionally significant powers. The legality of the government's decision to request a prorogation will be determined by the Supreme Court on 19 September. Whether or not the Supreme Court decides that the government's decision was unlawful, the Brexit prorogation has highlighted…

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In a Democracy the Rule of Law means Parliament is supreme over the Executive

Murray Hunt considers why the Rule of Law is relevant to the current constitutional confrontation between the UK Government and Parliament Whenever the political temperature rises dramatically, invocation of the Rule of Law is seldom far behind. It is frequently enlisted by both sides in a political dispute, as a high-minded weapon to deploy on political opponents. All too often it is used in a rhetorical way, to lend extra weight to a political argument that the other side are doing something…

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The Brexit Prorogation: an unsustainable constitutional confrontation

Jack Simson Caird explains the strategic logic of the decision to prorogue Parliament. He writes that the government seems to be seeking confrontation with Parliament not just over Brexit, but over different visions of the constitution and democracy. So, unlike May's Government, Johnson's is willing to deploy all the means at its disposal in order to realise its visions. The government's decision to prorogue Parliament between 9-12 September to 14 October is based on overlapping strategic…

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APPG on the Rule of Law: The EU Settlement Scheme

Background On Tuesday 16 July 2019, the APPG for the Rule of Law met to discuss the Rule of Law implications of the EU Settlement Scheme. The meeting was convened to discuss a new Public Law Project report, authored by Dr Joe Tomlinson, titled 'Quick and Uneasy Justice: An Administrative Justice Analysis of the EU Settlement Scheme'  which offers an end-to-end administrative justice analysis of the design, and thus the underpinning values, of the Scheme. Dominic Grieve QC MP chaired a…

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APPG on the Rule of Law: The Rule of Law Implications of the EU Settlement Scheme

The EU Settlement Scheme: the Rule of Law Implications The creation of the EU Settlement Scheme, a consequence of the UK's decision to withdraw from the European Union, is said to set 'the tone for the design and values' of the new post-Brexit immigration system. While much has been written about the substantive legal changes this entails, a new Public Law Project report, authored by Dr Joe Tomlinson, titled 'Quick and Uneasy Justice: An Administrative Justice Analysis of the EU Settlement…

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Are we in a constitutional crisis or is this the UK constitution at work?

Are we in a constitutional crisis or is this the UK constitution at work? The referendum result in 2016 represented the beginning of a process of constitutional change in the UK. How the UK's uncodified constitution will be changed, or even whether the UK will leave the EU at all, is currently uncertain. If the UK leaves the EU on 31 October 2019, then the UK constitution and its three legal systems will change significantly on exit day. The nature of the change that takes place on exit day…

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Parliament must act quickly to exert influence if it wishes to prevent a ‘no deal’ Brexit

In four months' time, the extension to the Article 50 period agreed in April will expire. The UK will have a new Prime Minister by then, although it remains unclear what position they will take if the Commons continues to refuse to approve the Withdrawal Agreement. Jack Simson Caird analyses the legal and political mechanisms available should parliament seek to prevent the next Prime Minister taking the UK out of the EU without a deal. Boris Johnson has said that if he is the next Prime Minister…

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Jack Simson Caird on BBC Parliament

Jack Simson Caird was interviewed on BBC Parliament's the Week in Parliament on whether Parliament can block a No Deal Brexit on 31 October 2019. 

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APPG on the Rule of Law: Can Parliament stop a no deal Brexit?

APPG on the rule of Law: Can parliament stop a no deal Brexit? A recent Institute for Government comment arguing that Parliament would not be able to stop a Prime Minister determined to deliver no deal has provoked significant debate. This roundtable is being convened to debate the argument advanced in the comment piece and to consider the possible steps that Parliament could take to prevent a no deal exit. Chair Dominic Grieve QC MP, Chair of the APPG on the Rule of Law…

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Brexit and the constitution: seven lessons

This article originally appeared in the June issue of Counsel and is reprinted with permission. Brexit can plausibly be described as a 'constitutional moment'. The decision to leave the EU will shape the UK constitution over the coming decades. Even if the full extent of the constitutional changes that will flow from Brexit are not yet known, future Prime Ministers will be defined (in part, at least) by their ability to oversee successful constitutional reform. The post-referendum period has…

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Jack Simson Caird on All Out Politics on Sky News with Adam Boulton

Jack Simson Caird appeared on All Out Politics on Sky News with Adam Boulton to discuss the parliamentary dynamics of getting the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill through the Commons.

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Jack Simson Caird gave oral evidence to the House of Commons' Liaison Committee

Jack Simson Caird gave oral evidence to the House of Commons' Liaison Committee in its inquiry into how select committees can improve their scrutiny of Government Jack's evidence focused on how Select Committees could improve their scrutiny of the Brexit process, and in particular how the lessons from the Article 50 process could be used to improve scrutiny of the negotiations on the future relationship. You can see clips of Jack's evidence here, watch the full session, read his written submission…

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Brexit: Is the UK’s ‘Constitutional Moment’ here at last?

This article was originally published on the UK Human Rights Blog. Codified constitutions are most commonly adopted following a major schism with the previous order. For example, following an armed uprising such as the American War of Independence or the French Revolution. The sweeping away of the old regime, of necessity, demands the creation of new fundamental principles and rules to organise the State. A codified constitution also presents an opportunity to set out the core values on which…

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APPG on the Rule of Law: Parliament, Brexit and the Rule of Law

'Brexit, Parliament and The Rule of Law: extending Article 50 and implementing the Withdrawal Agreement' 'Brexit, Parliament and The Rule of Law: extending Article 50 and implementing the Withdrawal Agreement' This meeting considered the events leading up to 29 March and discussed Rule of Law challenges facing Parliament. Chair Dominic Grieve QC MP, Chair of the APPG on the Rule of Law Speakers Professor Kenneth Armstrong, Professor of European Law at the University…

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Jack Simson Caird being interviewed by Adam Boulton on Sky News

Jack Simson Caird, Senior Research Fellow in Parliaments and the Rule of Law, spoke to Adam Boulton on Sky News about the second round of indicative votes designed to ascertain the level of support in the Commons for a range of Brexit options Jack predicted that it is very hard to see this Parliament legislating its way out of the situation. All the main options other than no deal need legislation: the Prime Minister's deal, a referendum, or revocation of Article 50. The only options that…

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Jack Simson Caird on BBC World News’ coverage of the Meaningful Vote on the Brexit deal

Jack Simson Caird's appearance on the BBC World News' coverage of the Meaningful Vote on the Brexit deal in the House of Commons Jack discussed the likely impact on the meaningful vote of the Attorney General's advice on whether the additional agreements with the EU changed the legal risk of the UK being unable to exit from the Northern Ireland backstop.

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MPs’ powers of persuasion are shaping the Brexit endgame

This week has been a momentous one for the Brexit endgame in the Commons. There is a growing sense of frustration and bewilderment at the lack of progress being made by MPs. However, it is worth taking a step back and seeing this week's events in the wider context of the relationship between the government and the Commons which has been evolving and adapting to the unique circumstances of Brexit. In a UK in a Changing Europe and Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law report published this week ,…

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Murray Hunt at the House of Lords EU Justice Committee in its inquiry into Rights after Brexit

Murray Hunt appeared before the House of Lords EU Justice Committee in its inquiry into Rights after Brexit. The Committee is examining the future framework for and potential risks to rights after Brexit. My evidence focused on the risk of compounding the legal uncertainty already caused by Brexit by unnecessarily sowing seeds of doubt about the future of the Human Rights Act. I contrasted this with the post-Brexit human rights leadership being demonstrated in Scotland and by the Foreign…

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Brexit Votes Explained UK in a Changing Europe and Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law report

The report sets out what affects MPs' influence and shows that there could be no deal if members of parliament continue to vote against everything. Publication - Download PDF Share Links Publication - Tags

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The House of Commons’ Last Chance at Taking Back Control?

On Wednesday 27 February, MPs will have another opportunity to debate an amendable motion on the Government's approach to Brexit. The debate on Wednesday is likely to focus on the plan put forward by Yvette Cooper MP (Labour) and Oliver Letwin MP (Conservative). They want MPs to have a legally binding say on whether the Prime Minister seeks an extension to Article 50's two-year negotiating period. An amendment on Wednesday (if passed) would make time for legislation to achieve this. This post…

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Murray Hunt's closing remarks at Remaking the UK Constitution, Mansfield College, Oxford

Murray Hunt, in his closing remarks at the conference (from 2:00:08) proposes the initiation of an inclusive deliberative process in each of the four nations of the UK on the specific question of whether human rights protection can be enhanced post-Brexit

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Could the UK Courts Disapply Domestic Legislation to Enforce the Protocol on Ireland and N.Ireland?

If the Withdrawal Agreement is approved, then Parliament will be asked to legislate to give domestic legal effect to its content through the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill. One of the most significant provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement, Article 4, purports to give the entire contents of the Withdrawal Agreement special status within the UK's constitutional order. Even though the UK would no longer be a Member State, the effect of Article 4 (if implemented) would be to give all of the laws…

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The meaningful vote process has failed us

This was originally published in the UK in a Changing Europe blog  on 18 February 2019, republished here with kind permission. The Commons votes on January 29 marked the conclusion of the meaningful vote process. Ever since we have been in limbo. At the very moment when MPs and the government are searching for a way of reaching a consensus to break the Brexit deadlock, it appears our established constitutional procedures, and the ones we have created to deal with Brexit, have failed to…

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Resolving the Brexit impasse UK in a Changing Europe and Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law report

There are disputes over territory in almost every region of the world, sometimes leading to escalations and violence between States and threatening international peace and security. International law requires States to refrain from the threat or use of force and to attempt to settle their disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace, security and justice are not endangered. In June 2018 the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL) has completed…

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Seven Brexit endgame scenarios – a guide to the parliamentary process of withdrawal from the European Union

Seven Brexit endgame scenarios - a guide to the parliamentary process of withdrawal from the European Union Project Report This report is a guide to seven of the different possible parliamentary scenarios that might occur between now and exit day. This report explains how each of these scenarios could play out, and highlights the problems each faces. These hurdles come both from within the UK and from the rules created by the EU. This report explains how procedure will affect the politics,…

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Brexit and the Speaker of the House of the Commons: Do the Ends Justify the Means?

Yesterday, the Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow MP, decided to allow an amendment to the Brexit timetable to be selected and voted upon by the Commons, in flat contradiction of the Commons' rules and against the advice of his senior clerks.  The amendment itself sought to require the Government, in the event that the Commons rejects the deal when the meaningful vote concludes on 15 January, to return to the Commons with a fresh motion within three days. The Commons subsequently…

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The Commons’ verdict delayed: a decisive shift in the battle for control of the Brexit Endgame?

Theresa May's delay of the meaningful vote was a game-changing decision in the contest between the Commons and the Government for control of the Brexit process. This decision - ostensibly to address the concerns of MPs and enable further legal clarifications from the EU - might not appear that significant. In principle, the delay simply ensures MPs have all the information they need to make an informed choice. However, this underplays the strategic importance of the delay. The Government's…

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The House of Commons and the Brexit Endgame: what can the Commons achieve before exit day?

This was originally published in the UK in a Changing Europe blog  on 23 November 2018, republished here with kind permission. Amid all the noise around leadership challenges and a People's Vote, it is easy to forget that the role of the House of Commons in the Brexit Endgame is focused on two core tasks: Approving the Withdrawal Agreement and the Framework on the Future Relationship (the meaningful vote); and Turning the Withdrawal Agreement into domestic law through the EU (Withdrawal…

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Brexit and the Meaningful Vote: Down the Procedural Raab-it Hole?

Brexit has a knack for producing constitutional mountains out of procedural molehills. Last Wednesday, the House of Commons Procedure Committee published a letter from the Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab along with a Government Memorandum on the Government's views on how the procedural arrangements for the meaningful vote in the Commons agreed in the EU (Withdrawal) Act 2018 should work. In a nutshell, the Government wants to ensure that the Commons makes a decision on the Brexit deal motion…

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Taking Back Control: Brexit, Parliament and the Rule of Law

Over the next six months of the Brexit process, the UK Parliament will make a number of decisions that will have a profound impact on the UK's constitution and its legal systems. In a Bingham Centre for the Rule Law Report published this week, The Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration: A Preliminary Rule of Law Analysis , we argue that the next six months represents a major test for the Rule of Law in the UK. The Rule of Law does not itself provide answers to the question…

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The Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration: A Preliminary Rule of Law Analysis

This report identifies a number of Rule of Law issues that can inform the scrutiny of the Withdrawal Agreement, the Political Declaration on the Future Relationship and the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill in Parliament. The Rule of Law, a central principle of the UK's uncodified constitution, provides a set of minimum standards that can inform both the process and substance of Brexit. The final six months before exit day are unlikely to provide ideal conditions for effective parliamentary…

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The Brexit endgame: a guide to the parliamentary process of withdrawal from the European Union

The Brexit endgame: a guide to the parliamentary process of withdrawal from the European Union Project Report In this exhaustive report, Matt Bevington, Jack Simson Caird and Alan Wager have gone to great lengths to meticulously examine the nooks and crannies of parliamentary procedure to give an insight into how this process might work. Leaving to one side the vicissitudes of party politics, which, frankly, merit a report in their own right, they lay bare the complexities of the parliamentary…

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The EU (Withdrawal) Bill, A Rule of Law Analysis of Clauses 1 - 6

This Report sets out the Bingham Centre's Rule of Law analysis of clauses 1 to 6 of the EU (Withdrawal) Bill, to inform the House of Lords Committee Stage consideration of those clauses. The Bill's purpose is to protect the Rule of Law as the UK withdraws from the EU. It repeals the European Communities Act ("ECA"), the legal basis for EU law having effect and supremacy in UK law, with effect from the date of the UK's exit. However, it aims to ensure legal continuity, certainty and stability…

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Erasmus and Brexit

The provision of cross-border educational exchanges is a key achievement of the European Union. Despite this, Erasmus and the Erasmus+ programme have not featured as big ticket items in the Brexit discussion. Michael Abiodun Olatokun considered five key international education questions in 2017. This is available as a podcast interview here:  https://soundcloud.com/user-918926390/erasmus-and-brexit-michael-olatokun Q: What was the Erasmus programme?  A: The Erasmus programme was…

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The Rule Of Law Must Be At The Centre Of Brexit

The Rule of Law Must Be At The Centre of Brexit This post first appeared on the Huffington Post website. Friday morning's reaction to the Article 50 judgment has made me deeply reflective about the state of our politics. The Brexit era has been characterised by political announcements redolent of the deepest farce from 'The Thick Of It'. The EU Referendum has changed everything about British public life, and it is difficult to get a stable sense of what is actually going on as we lurch…

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