Brexit and judicial power

Document type
Richard Ekins
Policy Exchange
Date of publication
21 July 2016
Social welfare
Material type

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This paper explores the significance of Britain's exit from the European Union (Brexit) for judicial power.  Produced as part of the Judicial Power Project, it claims that the referendum confirms the British people's commitment to self-government, parliamentary democracy, and the prerogatives of the nation-state. The rejection of continuing membership of the European Union (EU) follows in part from the misuse of judicial power within the EU and the prospect of more such.  Membership of the EU accustomed judges and lawyers to thinking of Acts of Parliament as not in practice the highest form of law and thus tended to undermine respect for parliamentary sovereignty.  The paper explores judicial power pending and after Brexit.  It concludes with an agenda for continuing reform to separate judicial and political authority, including recommending that the Government should respond robustly to the litigation challenging its competence to exercise Article 50.

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