UK: Supreme Court Upholds Parliamentary Democracy

The Supreme Court has upheld last year’s ruling by the High Court that Prime Minister Theresa May cannot enter official Brexit negotiations with other EU member states without the backing of Parliament.

According to Supreme Court President Lord Neuberger, the Supreme Court today ruled that the Government are not permitted to invoke Article 50 without approval in the form of an Act of Parliament.

Despite Theresa May’s government arguing it should have the power to trigger Article 50 without consulting MPs, campaigners throughout the trial argued that doing so would be undemocratic.

Speaking outside the court, Attorney General Jeremy Wright indicated that the government was disappointed but confirmed they would “comply with the judgement of the court and do all that is necessary to implement it”.

Whilst the ruling represents a minor set-back for Theresa May, the fact that the Tories have a working majority of 15 in the House of Commons means that any bill in favour of triggering Article 50 is almost certain to pass. The majority of Labour MPs have also indicated a reluctance to stand in the way of Brexit, with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn confirming his party “will not frustrate the process for invoking Article 50.”

As such, any potential block on Brexit looks increasingly unlikely however the Supreme Court’s ruling is significant in upholding parliamentary democracy and process.

More details of any such legislation will be confirmed in due course, with a draft bill already said to have been prepared.

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