Interviewed on LBC, Boris Johnson said that his Government was proposing to legislate in order to make ‘trivial’ changes to the Northern Ireland Protocol. In this post, I will explain what the planned legislation will do; why the changes are not ‘trivial’; why it is, in fact, legally impossible for the UK to make unilateral … Continue reading The Northern Ireland Protocol Bill
It doesn’t seem (because it isn’t) very long since the UK Government planned to get Parliament to enact legislation that would have authorised Ministers to make regulations permitting parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol they don’t like to be breached. The Government sensibly dropped this idea in the end: the relevant provisions did not find … Continue reading Legal exceptionalism in British political discourse: International law, parliamentary sovereignty and the rule of law
When he was Theresa May’s Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson famously said, apropos of Brexit, that his ‘policy on cake’ was ‘pro having it and pro eating it’ — in other words, having the best of both worlds. Although the Prime Minister doubled down on that view yesterday, claiming that he had delivered the 'cakeist' fantasy … Continue reading The UK-EU Brexit Agreements and ‘sovereignty’: Having one’s cake and eating it?
The following is a lightly edited version of a piece that was first published in the autumn/winter 2020 edition of Lauterpacht Centre News, the newsletter of the University of Cambridge's Lauterpacht Centre for International Law. Lauterpacht Centre News can be downloaded via the Centre's website. Another autumn, another Brexit-related constitutional drama in the UK. A … Continue reading Legal kryptonite? Parliamentary sovereignty, international law and the Internal Market Bill
In an earlier post and in evidence to the House of Lords Constitution Committee I have already drawn attention to concerns about the attempt in the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill to oust judicial review of regulations made under clauses 42 and 43 — the provisions that allow Ministers to breach the UK’s international obligations … Continue reading One step forward, two steps back? Judicial review and the Government’s amendments to the Internal Market Bill
I was pleased to be invited to give evidence earlier this week to the House of Lords Constitution Committee on the constitutional issues arising from the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill (about which I wrote in an earlier blogpost). In giving evidence to the Committee, I appeared alongside Sir Stephen Laws, former First Parliamentary Counsel, … Continue reading The Internal Market Bill: My evidence to the House of Lords Constitution Committee
If proof were needed that a week can be a long time in politics, one would need to look no further than the events of the last seven days in the UK. Three matters during the course of the last week have vividly illustrated — individually, but more importantly collectively — an increasingly clear narrative … Continue reading The (constitutional) state we’re in: A week in British politics
The willingness of the UK’s Brexiteer-led Government to pick fights with the European Union is a given. So too, now, is its appetite for a show-down with the courts, as the recently launched review of administrative law attests. It is therefore perhaps no surprise that the Government, via the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill, has … Continue reading The Internal Market Bill – A Perfect Constitutional Storm
I recently completed work on an article for a special issue of the Japanese legal journal Horitsu Jiho. The theme of the special issue is the impact of the forces of globalisation and nationalism on constitutional law and the study of it. In my contribution, I consider the potential implications of the United Kingdom's departure … Continue reading The United Kingdom’s constitution and Brexit: A ‘constitutional moment’?
This short piece, which forms part of my 1,000 words series of posts, aims to set out in an accessible way the key points of the Supreme Court's judgment in the Cherry/Miller (No 2) case. For a more detailed and technical analysis of the judgment, see this post. In its historic judgment in Cherry/Miller (No … Continue reading 1,000 words / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Cherry/Miller (No 2)