Alan Greene: Miller 2, Non-justiciability and the Danger of Legal Black Holes – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘In R (Miller) and Others v The Prime Minister (hereinafter Miller No.2), the High Court of England and Wales found that the decision of the Prime Minister to advise the Queen to prorogue parliament was non-justiciable. In doing so, the judgment reveals the propensity of the judiciary to be much more protective of its own empire than that of the legislature. Ultimately, however, it is an approach that undermines both due to the creation of a legal black hole.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 13th September 2019

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

In defence of the Fixed-term Parliaments Act – UCL Constitution Unit

‘The Fixed-term Parliaments Act has come in for a lot of criticism of late, but is it as badly designed and drafted as some commentators would have us believe? The House of Lords Constitution Committee recently commenced an inquiry into the effectiveness of the Act to seek answers to this question. Robert Hazell and Nabila Roukhamieh-McKinna explain the background to the inquiry, and some of the key issues being addressed.’

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UCL Constitution Unit , 23rd September 2019

Source: constitution-unit.com

Brexit: Scottish judges rule Parliament suspension is unlawful – BBC News

‘Boris Johnson’s suspension of the UK Parliament is unlawful, Scotland’s highest civil court has ruled.’

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BBC News, 11th September 2019

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Brexit: Judge rejects parliament shutdown legal challenge – BBC News

‘A Scottish judge has rejected a bid to have Boris Johnson’s plan to shut down parliament ahead of Brexit declared illegal.’

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BBC News, 4th September 2019

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Article: The legal challenge to proroguing Parliament – what is happening in the Scottish Courts? – UKSC Blog

‘In this article, UKSC Blog editor, Emma Boffey, an associate at CMS based in Scotland, writes on the Scottish legal challenge to the proroguing of the UK Parliament: a case widely expected to head to the UK Supreme Court in the coming weeks.’

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UKSC Blog, 2nd September 2019

Source: ukscblog.com

Jacob Rowbottom: Political Purposes and the Prorogation of Parliament – UK Constitutional Law Association

Posted September 3rd, 2019 in brexit, constitutional law, news, parliament, prerogative powers, royal prerogative by sally

‘While the prorogation of Parliament has generated political controversy, constitutional lawyers are asking whether the government acted legally in advising the Monarch. The legal challenges to the prorogation will face a number of hurdles. Even if the prerogative power is justiciable, there are difficult questions in identifying the specific legal issue. When writing about a potential challenge in June, Lord Pannick stated that one legal objection is that ‘the prime minister would be seeking to prorogue parliament for the purpose of avoiding parliamentary sovereignty on an issue of significant constitutional importance’. This post will explore a related line of argument, which focuses on proroguing Parliament as a means to avoid political accountability (so the argument does not rely on the language of sovereignty). The starting point in the line of argument is that the prorogation will to some degree hinder Parliament in whatever it wants to do in the period immediately prior to Britain exiting the EU. That goes beyond the potential to enact legislation or pass a motion of no confidence, and also includes the ordinary channels of political accountability and scrutiny of government.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 3rd September 2019

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

Prorogation: Constitutional Principle and Law, Fact and Causation – Oxford Human Rights Hub

‘The Prime Minister’s recent announcement that Parliament would be prorogued, thereby severely curtailing the opportunity for parliamentary debate, raises important issues of constitutional principle and law, and also issues concerning fact and causation. They are examined in turn.’

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Oxford Human Rights Hub, 31st August 2019

Source: ohrh.law.ox.ac.uk

Playing Hardball with the Queen – Oxford Human Rights Hub

Posted September 2nd, 2019 in bills, brexit, constitutional law, Crown, news, parliament, prerogative powers by sally

‘The idea of constitutional hardball was introduced to the world by Mark Tushnet. The sport is played when political actors decide the stakes are so high that any lawful action is justified, no matter how constitutionally problematic: hardball stays within the confines of the law, but runs against the spirit, and sometimes the conventions, of the constitution.’

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Oxford Human Rights Hub, 31st August 2019

Source: ohrh.law.ox.ac.uk

Proroguing parliament sets a horrifying precedent. I’m going to court to stop it – Gina Miller – The Guardian

‘Other dictatorial moves may follow if Boris Johnson’s ruse is allowed to pass. The high court must listen to our case against it.’

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The Guardian, 29th August 2019

Source: www.theguardian.com

Judge refuses to halt Parliament suspension plans ahead of full hearing – BBC News

Posted August 30th, 2019 in brexit, injunctions, judges, news, parliament, prerogative powers, royal prerogative by sally

‘A Scottish judge has refused to order a temporary halt to Boris Johnson’s plan to shut down the UK Parliament.’

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BBC News, 30th August 2019

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Parliament suspension: What was the Queen’s role? – BBC News

‘It is most unlikely we will ever get any authoritative insight into what the Queen thought about the prime minister’s request for her to suspend Parliament.’

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BBC News, 29th August 2019

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Parliament had failed on Brexit long before this prorogation – The Guardian

Posted August 30th, 2019 in brexit, constitutional law, EC law, news, parliament, prerogative powers, referendums by sally

‘MPs had three years to come up with an alternative to no deal – and they failed.’

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The Guardian, 29th August 2019

Source: www.theguardian.com

What is a judicial review and can it stop a no-deal Brexit? – BBC News

Posted July 11th, 2019 in brexit, judicial review, news, parliament, prerogative powers by sally

‘Sir John Major has said he will seek a judicial review should Boris Johnson become Tory leader and suspend Parliament in order to deliver a no-deal Brexit. But, just what is a judicial review?’

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BBC News, 10th July 2019

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

To shut down parliament would be simple. But it would be an outrage – The Guardian

‘The next prime minister will have the power to prevent MPs blocking a no-deal Brexit, though would he or she dare close the Commons for three months?’

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The Guardian, 13th June 2019

Source: www.theguardian.com

Stefan Theil: Unconstitutional Prorogation – UK Constitutional Law Association

Posted April 3rd, 2019 in brexit, constitutional law, Crown, news, parliament, prerogative powers by sally

‘Parliament voted on the evening of 1 April in a series of indicative votes to determine what, if any, alternative plan for withdrawal from the European Union could command the support of the House of Commons: all plans put forward again failed to command a majority. In a recent intervention, John Finnis has suggested that the government should prorogue Parliament until after 12 April in order to terminate the current parliamentary debate. Mark Elliott has offered a critique of the broader implications of this argument, namely the claim that such a course of action would be ‘(…) wholly legitimate as a matter of constitutional principle.’ Elliott concludes that parliamentary control of the process is entirely legitimate and in keeping with the British constitution. This piece adds to this analysis by elaborating why the prorogation Finnis advocates under these specific circumstances would be, as Elliott summarily puts it, ‘(…) an argument for unconstitutional action on the part of the Government.’ The piece develops a twofold argument: first, that ministerial advice tendered to seek a prorogation of Parliament under these circumstances is unconstitutional and that the Monarch should disregard it as a matter of constitutional convention; and second that holding otherwise would in effect grant the Prime Minister an unqualified veto over parliamentary business, leaving the government in an unconscionable position of power over the sovereign Parliament. Such an outcome would be fundamentally at odds with British parliamentary democracy, especially principles of democracy and representative and responsible government.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 3rd April 2019

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

Stephen Tierney: The Legislative Supremacy of Government – UK Constitutional Law Association

Posted July 4th, 2018 in bills, brexit, constitutional law, EC law, news, parliament, prerogative powers by sally

‘At the same time as Parliament prepares to ‘take back control’ from Brussels, the executive is in fact accruing to itself further control over the legislative process. In this post I address a number of trends – only some of which are a direct consequence of the unique circumstances of Brexit – which suggest a deeper realignment of institutional power within the constitution and a consequent diminution of Parliament’s legislative power.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 3rd July 2018

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

Rosie Slowe: Article 50 Notice and Implied Conditionality – UK Human Rights Blog

‘More substantive than the 137 word EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Act 2017 (‘Notification Act’), which was passed by Parliament on 13 March, the Prime Minister’s 6 page letter of notice, issued under Article 50 TEU, is lacking in one crucial respect. This post asserts that, as a matter of UK constitutional law and in accordance with the EU Treaties as well as customary international law, conditionality should be inferred into this notice. Such conditionality manifests in the requirement of domestic Parliamentary approval at the end of the Article 50 negotiation process.’

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UK Human Rights Blog, 7th April 2017

Source: www.ukhumanrightsblog.com

Elizabeth Campion: The Constitutional “Ripple Effect” of the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act 2017 – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘Miller and others v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5 was highly anticipated as perhaps the most signficant constitutional case of this generation, stirring up such strong reactions that the judges of the Divisional Court who initially decided in favour of Ms. Miller were dubbed “Enemies of the People”. Two months after a majority of an 11-member Supreme Court confirmed that prerogative powers could not be used to invoke Article 50, however, the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act 2017 (hereafter referred to as the “Withdrawal Act”) received Royal Assent, conferring power on the Prime Minister to give the notification required to begin the process of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union. The passage of the Withdrawal Act fulfilled the constitutional requirements identified in Miller formally, within the purely political timetable set by the Prime Minister at the Conservative Party’s conference and without any additional legal requirements being imposed by way of amendment. This not only sets the stage but also prepares the way for a more permanent sidelining of Parliament as the supreme legislative body in the UK’s constitution as part of the process of leaving the European Union.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 27th March 2017

Source: www.ukconstitutionallaw.org

Attorney general defends article 50 litigation costs – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted March 17th, 2017 in costs, EC law, news, prerogative powers, referendums, Supreme Court by tracey

‘The attorney general has defended the government’s decision to take the fight over how article 50 is triggered to the highest UK court, assuring MPs that the cost of the appeal will be published “in due course”.’

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Law Society’s Gazette, 16th March 2017

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Miller and the modern British Constitution – Counsel

‘Miller reveals the malleability of the parliamentary sovereignty doctrine, argues Professor Mark Elliott in his examination of the many tensions which lie at the heart of the majority judgment.’

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Counsel, March 2017

Source: www.counselmagazine.co.uk