The Brexit vote result shocked not only the nation, it also shocked the world – and now we find ourselves amid another Brexit scandal. The new legal case that has won at the high court which puts Brexit into question.
So, what was the legal ruling and why was it passed?
The team putting forward an argument was not to stop Brexit – rather it was to question whether the ruling party has the right to trigger article 50 without a vote in parliament. So essentially we still could be leaving the EU, but not without a vote by parliament.
However, this could change as the government is looking to appeal against the decision and the prime minister has said that she is determined to make sure she wins the appeal.
Essentially, the legal ruling states that what parliament ‘says’, goes. Therefore, if the government were to trigger article 50, parliament is being overruled – and that this goes against the democratic process that dictates that parliament creates laws, and it’s only parliament that can retract them.
The EU referendum result was only ‘advisory’ and not ‘mandatory’ therefore the government cannot use that as the basis to trigger article 50.
In the words of Lord Thomas during this final remarks: “The bedrock of the British constitution is… the supremacy of the Crown in Parliament.”
So, when can ministers use their prerogative powers?
It is stated within our legislation that it can be used for international relations, and to create and retract international treaties.
The judges have stopped the government in their tracks and have caused the biggest Constitutional clash of our time. We now await the government’s response to the claim and see what will happen if their appeal goes through.
The woman behind the whole legal process is Gina Miller – as the lead claimant she’s come under huge fire from critics who backed Brexit. However, she has repeatedly said this is not about over ruling Brexit – rather it’s about the way we decide to do that, and who should have that right to trigger article 50.
Backed by a crowd-funded campaign, her and her team took the case to the high court and succeeded in their mission. They were concerned about the ways the democratic processes were heading.
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