Supreme Court takes over to stop Brexit

The neo-authoritarian Remain camp is not content to trample on democracy, it is now encroaching on the rule of law itself. The Supreme Court has become a political tool for those opposed to Brexit. This shabby new strategy must not succeed

Does this look like Parliament to you?
Joshua Mackenzie-Lawrie
On 27 September 2019 13:06

Welcome friends to the dawn of a new era in the UK Constitutional Settlement. We are no longer ruled by those who are elected, but are instead ruled by 11 unaccountable and unelected Judges.

Throughout the recent history of the United Kingdom, we the people have had the opportunity to hold those who govern us to account by holding elections. However, we are now in unchartered territory. With the Remain-biased Labour Party refusing to accept any request for a General Election, the country has now been placed in the control of the Supreme Court.

Neither MPs nor the public have any means of holding these Judges to account, as the Supreme Court faces no form of scrutiny as they do not face elections of any kind. The 11 Judges who have made the recent critical political decisions in this Court are not chosen by the public or Parliament. They were instead selected for their role by a panel of 14 commissioners made up of their fellow Judges, lawyers and a handful of non-legal members.

There is no 'safety valve' to challenge their ruling, as this is supposed to be the highest Court in the land. The Supreme Court’s ruling is final at the present time. The only way to add or remove a Justice, is to wait for one to retire at the mandatory age of 75 or for one of them to retire at an earlier time of their choosing.

This lack of accountability matters greatly, because new powers have now been introduced by this Supreme Court ruling. Surely, as Prime Minister Boris Johnson suggested this week, there should be a serious investigation into the role of our current Supreme Court system, originally set up by Tony Blair’s Government in 2005.

This is especially important as this is the first time this Court – which is not supposed to be a ‘political’ Court -- has introduced new Constitutional Law which has not been properly scrutinised according to due process in the Houses of Parliament - as is usually the case - changing the very basis of our political system.

Therefore, the question is, is it acceptable for these 11 democratically unaccountable Judges to redefine our British Constitution, with no public mandate, and no democratic legitimacy? Quite simply, no.

At the start of this entire case which was about the prorogation of Parliament for a period of 7 extra days, the Supreme Court said that their judgments and this entire case would have nothing to do with Brexit. This was a statement which - to anyone paying attention - cannot now be seen to be true.

The appeal against prorogation was started by Remainers who were clearly attempting to limit the Government’s actions on behalf of the 17.4 million people who voted Leave in the EU Referendum. This was a blatant attempt to stop the Brexit process. As such, the Supreme Court - despite their initial claims of ‘political’ neutrality – has now clearly taken an inherently ‘political’ decision, which will change how Supreme Courts will behave forever, unless Parliament takes action to properly and legally define their role in the future.

Throughout our history, the United Kingdom has been a stable nation - never needing to look closely at how our Constitution functions. We have now been placed in a situation where our Constitution has been pushed to its limits by a cabal of Remoaners – particularly in our Remain-majority-Parliament, by Remain MPs mainly in Leave-voting constituencies – who are unable to accept the result of a free and fair EU Referendum.

Brexit has forced the United Kingdom to pause and reflect on several major issues, the British Constitution being one of them. When we Get Britain Out of the EU, our Government must make it a top priority to take back power from the Supreme Court.

We must not allow power to reside in the hands of unelected and unaccountable Judges if there is to be any future for democratic, sovereign governance in this country.

Joshua Mackenzie-Lawrie and Harry Todd are Senior Research Executives at the grassroots cross-party campaign Get Britain Out

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