Lewis Graham: Paused Policies, Secret Policies and the Rule of Law: XY v Secretary of State for the Home Department – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘It is hard to think of a concept with a more contested definition in legal and political circles than “the rule of law”. The question of what content (if any) might be found within it (and indeed, what “it” even is – a political truth? A normative ideal? A mere slogan?) has been taken up, with varying degrees of enthusiasm, by first-year law students, wizened academics, campaigning groups and politicians. If it sometimes seems that a thicker, rights-laden understanding of the term has taken root, detractors are always quick to emerge, eager to remind us of what the rule of law is and what it is not. There is a real danger in piling too much upon the notion so as to distort the concept, which may cause us to lose sight of why the rule of law is uniquely important. At the very least, framing the rule of law narrowly helps ensure that an appropriate degree of opprobrium can be generated in those instances when it is, in fact, undermined.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 22nd February 2024

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org