New paper / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller: In Search of Constitutional Principle

I recently finished work on a paper that will be published in the July 2017 issue of the Cambridge Law Journal. Entitled ‘The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller: In Search of Constitutional Principle’, the paper analyses the decision in R (Miller) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5. As is well-known, the Supreme Court, in that case, held that the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union could not be initiated by the Government using prerogative power; rather, the Brexit process could be begun only with Parliament’s legislative blessing. As is equally well-known, that blessing was conferred by Parliament via the European … Continue reading New paper / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller: In Search of Constitutional Principle

The Great Repeal Bill White Paper in 20 tweets

I posted a number of tweets yesterday extracting key paragraphs from the Government’s White Paper on the Great Repeal Bill and offering some preliminary thoughts on them. For convenience, I have collected the tweets below. Some more detailed comments on the White Paper can be found in this post, in which I draw attention to some notable gaps in the White Paper and argue that the Government’s thinking in some key areas appears to highly undeveloped — or at least, at this stage, undisclosed. In one of the tweets below, I suggest that the possibility — raised by the White … Continue reading The Great Repeal Bill White Paper in 20 tweets

European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill: Report of House of Lords Constitution Committee

The House of Lords Constitution Committee has published a report on the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill. The Bill, which is presently being considered by the House of Lords, was introduced into Parliament in the wake of the Supreme Court’s judgment in R (Miller) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5, in which it was held that legislation was needed before the initiation of the process whereby the UK will withdraw from the EU under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union. The Bill, as presently drafted, authorises the Prime Minister to invoke … Continue reading European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill: Report of House of Lords Constitution Committee

The ‘Three Knights Opinion’ on Brexit: A response

Bindmans LLP have published a fascinating opinion which argues that the EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill that is presently before Parliament does not authorise Brexit, and that a further Act of Parliament will be required if Brexit is to occur in a way that is lawful as a matter of UK law. The opinion is written by Sir David Edward KCMG PC QC, Sir Francis Jacobs KCMG PC QC, Sir Jeremy Lever KCMG QC, Helen Mountfield QC and Gerry Facenna QC. The authors of what Bindmans have dubbed the ‘Three Knights Opinion’ — including those who are not knights — are leading authorities … Continue reading The ‘Three Knights Opinion’ on Brexit: A response

Article for Counsel magazine: Miller and the modern British constitution

This article reflects on the key constitutional issues raised by the judgment of the UK Supreme Court in R (Miller) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5. It is available on Counsel magazine’s website and was published in the March 2017 print edition of Counsel. The article is republished here with permission. There are few aspects of the modern British constitution that the Supreme Court’s judgment in Miller does not at least engage. Among others, it raises questions about the nature of parliamentary sovereignty, the extent of the executive’s prerogative authority, the status within the domestic legal system of European … Continue reading Article for Counsel magazine: Miller and the modern British constitution

Analysis / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller

In this post I analyse and reflect upon the Supreme Court’s judgment in R (Miller) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5. A shorter post, setting out the key aspects of the majority and dissenting judgments, can be found here. On 24 January 2017, the UK Supreme Court gave judgment in the Miller case, in which the Government sought to establish that it could initiate the UK’s withdrawal from the EU without reference to Parliament. The Supreme Court also considered whether the UK’s devolution arrangements impacted upon the Government’s capacity to trigger Article 50 of … Continue reading Analysis / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller

1,000 words / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller

In this 1,000 words post I explain the key points decided by the UK Supreme Court in R (Miller) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5. I have written a separate, longer, post in which I analyse the case in depth; that post can be found here. In its judgment in Miller, the Supreme Court reached two key conclusions: that an Act of Parliament is needed before Brexit can be triggered, and that the law does not enable devolved legislatures in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland to block Brexit. Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union … Continue reading 1,000 words / The Supreme Court’s Judgment in Miller