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TCW Editorial: The democratic Brexit tide cannot be held back


We at The Conservative Woman, along with 17.4 million people, voted to leave the European Union. The main reason for this was to restore sovereignty to the Houses of Parliament and make Britain a self-governing nation once again.

The decision of the High Court that the Prime Minister cannot trigger Article 50 without Parliament’s support should be respected. The separation of powers and the Rule of law are a fundamental part of our constitutional democracy – a democracy that was hard won which we are blessed to live in.

However this does not mean that the judges of the High Court are legally infallible, and it is certainly at least arguable, that their decision was wrong. Having said that, inflammatory language against the judicial branch of our democracy is unhelpful.

The legal arguments are, in sum, that as Parliament conferred rights upon people only Parliament can take them away, and that it is a bedrock of constitutional law that ‘Parliament is sovereign’ such that the Prime Minister cannot and does not have the power to invoke Article 50 using the Royal prerogative.

Let us however pick apart these issues. Parliamentary sovereignty is a limit on the power of the Prime Minister. In short she cannot take away rights from the people (whether by statute or common law) on a whim. What is envisaged here is a Prime Minister running roughshod over the rights of the people.

This is not what the Prime Minister seeks to do. What distinguishes this case from others and what makes this case without precedence is that Prime Minister is not acting on a whim. She is in fact following the will of the people as expressed in a Referendum which Parliament passed and enacted to have. It is Parliament that now seeks to limit the will of the people. We believe that the High Court did not give sufficient weight to this point.

Secondly, it must be implied within the principle of Parliamentary sovereignty that it cannot be used against itself. Again, the Prime Minister seeks to trigger Article 50 to vindicate the will of the people to return sovereignty to Parliament. Therefore, to argue that we must respect Parliamentary sovereignty to keep Parliament subservient to European Law is self-defeating.

For Remainers to advocate this position this deeply dishonest.

We leave the legal arguments here and await the appeal to the Supreme Court.

What is the much more serious issue however is the use by Remain politicians of the courts to subvert and deny the will of the people. It is clear that they will stop at nothing, no matter how harmful to our economy or indeed to public life to scupper Brexit. For this they should be help accountable – and may well have to answer for their behaviour at the ballot box sooner rather than later.

Some Remainers in their language have poisoned the civic discourse. Some refer to Brexit as racist, others wish ill health upon the children of those who voted to leave the European Union. This rhetoric is divisive.

Let us be clear: Brexit will happen. The Remainers can stick their finger in the dam for only a short time before the tide of democracy washes over them. We look forward to that day.

(Image: Garry Knight)

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Edited by Kathy Gyngell

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