The Supreme Court has no jurisdiction in preventing the Prime Minister from invoking Article 50 to leave to EU. Its ruling is wrong. Jurisdiction was passed to the People, who have primary authority, by Parliament.
25th January 2017
One must now wonder whether in his memoirs Lord Neuberger, President of the Supreme Court will say, of the unintended consequences of the Court’s Brexit decision, “Of course, the People had made a valid decision to leave the EU but at the time it seemed the right thing to send it back to Parliament.”
We are now ruled not by law but by legalisms.
Lord Neuberger and those Justices who voted with him are wrong. Parliament is not sovereign. Parliament is an administrative system for carrying out the will of the People. In the final analysis, the People are sovereign. That was established by the French revolution of which the French are justly proud. In this county, for better or worse, Oliver Cromwell acted for the People at the time of a useless Parliament and an extravagant King.
Similarly, it is the role of the Courts to codify the will of the People. It was not the Courts that, in their love of justice, forced legislation to give women the vote or to abolish slavery on a protesting People. If the Supreme Court is to create law as it is said to have done in this instance, it must be in accord with the wishes expressed by the People.
Brexit is a matter in which the Courts have no jurisdiction. The Attorney General should not have stipulated that they had jurisdiction following Parliament’s clear decision to mandate the People to decide the matter. One can hardly expect such august, learned and powerful men to draw limits to their own powers. The Courts lost jurisdiction when Parliament handed the Brexit decision to the People and implementation to the Government. That was what the People were told and that is the position. David Cameron said publicly that in the event of a referendum vote to leave the EU he would give Article 50 notice the next day. Clearly, he expressed what Parliament intended and his powers in the matter. That he resigned rather than give Article 50 notice speaks of his ethics rather than the legal position.
Let us be plain about the situation. The Prime Minister, Theresa May, underestimated the degree of disdain for democracy in this country. Delay in giving Article 50 notice while combatting the whining, demands and invective of the Remainers permitted time for the rich and influential to devise means to keep a system from which they benefit but the People and the United Kingdom do not. The Prime Minister is acting with honesty and integrity, with the good of the Country and the People’s wishes in mind. Unfortunately, honest persons often underestimate the duplicity and unscrupulousness of the rich and powerful who seek only their own interests.
It was always foreseeable with whom the Supreme Court would side. Its statement that Parliament is sovereign is a smoke screen. Parliament unequivocally passed an unqualified, simple, majority decision to the People by the 2015 Act and statements by Government Ministers. All the evidence is that this is so; there is nothing to the contrary. The Supreme Court has failed to uphold democracy, the consequences of which are not clear, but they will not benefit the country. The Court has permitted an opening for delay and manoeuvre by those who wish to remain in the EU. I understand that their Lordships have considered this matter, by intention, without consideration of the possible consequences of their ruling. I would inform them, unqualified in law as I am, that law is always about consequences. That is its purpose. We have the case of the Iraq war as an exhibit.
It was clear the day after the referendum result on 23 June 2016 that a situation like this would occur when the Remainers immediately said that the referendum was ‘advisory’. On 12 July I wrote a letter to the Chairman of the Treasury Select Committee that was considering the referendum result. Perhaps inevitably it counted for nothing, but it was clear what had to be done. The position is unchanged. The Court is wrong. Here is the letter:
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It is a sad and extraordinary day when one must say that our Supreme Court is wrong. We are experiencing events indicating that we are living in extreme and unstable times. We must deal with the times with confidence in our abilities and culture against the trouble-makers and back the Prime Minister in doing so. There is no-one else remotely capable of doing it.
By Christopher King MSc DipM DMS