I doubt this will last more than a day or two

Theresa May will formally begin the Brexit process by the end of March 2017, she has told the BBC.
The prime minister confirmed the deadline for triggering Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which sets in place a two-year process of withdrawal.
She has also promised a “Great Repeal Bill” in the next Queen’s Speech, which will overturn the act that took the UK into the forerunner of the EU.
It will remove the European Communities Act 1972 from the statute book.

The government will also enshrine all existing EU law into British law.

Whut?

The government will also enshrine all existing EU law into British law.

Err, No Prime Minister, no.

61 thoughts on “I doubt this will last more than a day or two”

  1. “The government will also enshrine all existing EU law into British law.”

    Indeed. There is no other credible approach.

  2. I think this makes sense, personally. If it’s all abrogated overnight that would be fairly chaotic and could lead to all sorts of expensive legal bullshit. Politically, it also takes away a leg of the anti Brexit/EU’s arguments, because to rip everything up on Monday morning would look vindictive and frankly immature. And however much we might focus on the economics and the higher issues of sovereignty etc the war is (unfortunately) being fought on the political and media battleground.

    Better to do this stuff incrementally – we have plenty of time over the next few years to pick and choose which bits we want to keep (it isn’t all insane) and which bits we don’t.

  3. This makes sense – a wholesale repeal of forty-odd years of EU (in all its various incarnations) would cause chaos. Enshrine the whole lot into UK law and then cut and prune at will.

    That said, this first move is scarcely any kind of big deal: more of an administrative act than anything and a precursor of things to come.

  4. That’s historically normal practice when a country moves away from another, previously supranational set of laws. A modern example might be Ireland, which adopted the set of laws from the various Westminster Parliaments (including the Commonwealth) and the several Irish Parliaments, that applied to Ireland at final independence, then revised them as convenient, maintaining legal continuity.

    Even then existing laws are retroactively modified by the equivalent of the Repeal Bill to update references to now non-existent institutions. In this case, the ECJ would be replaced by the Supreme Court, the Commission would be replaced by the Government, Secretaries of State, Parliament, or nothing as appropriate.

  5. “That said, this first move is scarcely any kind of big deal: more of an administrative act than anything and a precursor of things to come.”

    No, it is a big deal. The moment the Act comes into force, I would expect that everything immediately is justiciable only within the United Kingdom. All EU institutions cease to have their previous legal relevance.

  6. Ireland, Canada and Australia were still revising inherited and colonial law well into the 1960s, through periodic Law Commissions, and a good chunk might still be on the statue books as relevant. It’s a little different because the legal and political systems, and many public and political attitudes were compatible; probably less so with inherited EU law.

    Another reason to adopt it wholesale (except where completely irrelevant) is to simplify initial agreements regarding mutual recognition of standards etc in goods and services, to keep trade continuing smoothly.

  7. Until the EU law becomes UK law, it can’t be repealed by the UK parliament. I think even Ritchie might get that point.

  8. The opposite – tear it all up immediately – would be bone-headed. It should be torn up firmly, over time, as replacement legislation – or even better, absence of legislation – is introduced. It would, however, be foolish not to have an initial bonfire of some of the laws, particularly those that will not be replaced. In fact, it might be rather good to ask how many regulations we can ignore immediately, just by an abrogation of the sort the French seem to enjoy whenever they want.

  9. We can start with the EU re-cycling shite.

    And Davy–you think that staying in the fucking EU would work out the way the Remain liars claimed? Unless you and they fancy themselves as being in the boss class.

  10. CHF: All EU institutions cease to have their previous legal relevance.

    If that were to be the case and the act were passed before Brexit were concluded, surely there would be a powerful reaction?

    You may well be right but if I understand you correctly your interpretation rather preempts Brexit negotiations which is hardly an auspicious beginning for friendly talks.

  11. Mr Ecks – maybe they aren’t our friend. No need to make them an enemy in negotiations. They are merely on the other side. You don’t give up advantages or give the other side an advantage just for giggles.

    If something is a bad idea it can be changed later. Or not, as our politicians choose.

  12. The first one to go should be the ‘Cookies’ prompt every time you visit a webpage. Fucking annoying.

    I would have voted Brexit just to get rid of that.

  13. “If that were to be the case and the act were passed before Brexit were concluded, surely there would be a powerful reaction?”

    I said when it “comes into force” (takes effect legally). For instance, the British Nationality Act 1981 was passed in 1981, but different sections came into force at different times, some of it immediately that the Act was passed, but other critical provisions not until 1 January 1983.

    In other words, the Repeal Act will be passed next year, but the parts we’re talking about will only take effect later, the instant the UK has legally left the EU. “And there was much rejoicing”

  14. “No need to make them an enemy in negotiations. They are merely on the other side. ”

    They already are our enemies. Play nice as a tactic may be of value –but only that.

    Know your enemies. Or die.

  15. oh noes don’t say when pols start to look at options in pragmatic fashion things don’t turn out like your half-assed fantasies

  16. I think that Our Esteemed Host is wrong on this one – the only sensible way to go about it is to set the status quo as the baseline, and then work on a “great repeal bill” from there.

    The only other 2 options are:

    a) immediate repeal: result = chaos, since EU and UK law are intertwined.
    b) Selective adoption/repeal now. This is a lot of work in the short term that would have to be completed before the exit takes effect – there’s 40 years of this stuff to go through and disentangle.

    Plus, politically this is again a great move – throws a bone to the bremainiacs, and ensures stability, which seems to have been a defining policy of her premiership so far (e.g. she could absolutely destroy Lab by calling a snap election, but she chose keeping the markets calm over party political gain).

    I think that once again Mrs. May has exceeded my expectations.

  17. Actually, can anyone seriously contemplate Blair/Broon putting stability and the good of the country above party politics? They’d so convinced themselves that it was for the good of the country that they ruled, that their party’s interests were congruent with the country’s interests, that they’d have called a snap election after Broon took the reins had the Tories been in a similar state to Lab now. Even if it frightened the horses.

  18. The only people who think/thought Brexit would be a simple, easy process are the homonculi dreamt up in Remainers’ heads to represent their opponents.

    Just because it will be a long and difficult process, hindered by plenty of wankers and traitors in our political class no doubt, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be done.

  19. You return from behind your tears to strike again Zorro?

    Well you fancy clown there is nothing “pragmatic” about the scum of the EU.

    But don’t you worry. Every bit of their tinpot tyranny will be undone.

  20. But this is a splendid opportunity to re-introduce much loved laws from the past that those miserable gits in the EU got so sniffy about: http://bit.ly/2di5N4G Take that, France! And, er, Wales… erm… oh.

  21. Here’s a simple example of a clause changing wording of all existing legislation without enumerating the affected clauses (that’s left to computer, clerks and editors to do later, for the convenience of later reference). It’s from the British Nationality Act 1948 I.1(2):

    “Any person having the status aforesaid may be known either as a British subject or as a Commonwealth citizen ; and accordingly in this Act and in any other enactment or instrument whatever, whether passed, or made before or after the commencement of this Act, the expression ” British subject ” and the expression ” Commonwealth citizen ” shall have the same meaning.’ ”

    It takes much less time than tracking them all down, even with computer support. There are examples of changing one institution for another, but I like this one for the general technique because of the style.

  22. Rob+1 on the cookies prompt.
    I think incorporation is the only logical solution. And it will spike the guns of the unions and whinging remoaners who are already harping on about loss of ‘rights’.

  23. Luis – your comment makes no sense. Which half assed fantasies? I don’t know any intelligent people on either side of the debate who pretended it was going to be easy or quick. You remainers are an amusingly bitter bunch. You lost. Move on.

    🙂

  24. March 2017. That’s prefectly sensible timing. It means we leave at the next Euro elections so our MEPs cease to be MEPs when they cease to be MEPs and there’s no messing about cutting their term short or having/not having elections and leaving later.

    That’s exactly what happens when a local council is abolished – the exisiting councillors’ seats cease to exist at the next election. All neat and tidy.

  25. they’d have called a snap election after Broon took the reins had the Tories been in a similar state to Lab now. Even if it frightened the horses.

    The one-eyed Scottish cunt was all set to call a snap election when he took over (they apparently had cars standing by to whisk Labour ministers to all parts of the country to begin the campaign), but he bottled it at the last minute.

  26. I’m a hard-assed leaver, but even I think that we need to take on board all existing EU law at this point, just because (a) that makes negotiating deals so much easier, and (b) it nullifies all the Remainiac crap about the sky falling in because we’ve renounced all those lovely EU laws.

  27. Booker is heavily influenced by North.

    Who is an individual that I have increasingly less time for. He is obsessed with bureaucratic bullshit and believes that sans state permission to breathe the end of the world is nigh.

    North is right that the EU is only part of it. Increasingly the UN level scum are the source of internationalist tyranny. He thinks Brexit is good partly because we get our voice back in UN level fiddling. I think the UN is the next and top level of internationalist scum that needs destroying.

    U.N.EXIT NEXT.

  28. I like Booker (and Richard North, where all this stuff is coming from), but I’m not very convinced by his article today:

    “They talk about tariffs, as if these were the only problem about continuing to trade with the EU (easily our biggest trading partner), but these are now far less important than the vast thicket of regulatory “non-tariff barriers” such as customs procedures so complex that in practice they could shut us out of trading with the EU altogether.”

    If we take on board all existing EU laws then why is this a problem? We’re already conforming to EU custom laws and practises. We know how to do it. We just need to keep doing that (initially, at least)..

    “Indeed, worse still, the EU could continue selling to Britain, while its more than 1,000 points of customs entry would be all but closed to us.”

    Does anyone really believe this would happen? That all those German and French etc. companies that depend on our products would put up with that? Or that we would let other countries export to us while they don’t allow us to import to them? Far-fetched hypotheses are no basis for deciding Brexit. (And as I said, we just need to keep our custom procedures as they are for now.)

    “Those who propose option two: that we could somehow, in just two years, negotiate a bespoke “one-off” trade deal with the EU, seem unaware that the many such deals between the EU and other “third countries” are so complex that none have taken less than seven years to negotiate, involving thousands of pages of agreed terms and procedures. And none would give us anything like the full access to the single market.”

    We don’t need a free trade deal to deal with the EU. The worst-case scenario is using WTO rules, which aren’t ideal, but no disaster. Also, a free trade deal between the UK and the EU will be much easier to sort than the EU and any other country if we take on board all existing EU law because then we aren’t dealing with two very different systems, but two similar systems that have already been trading freely together.

    “It would even give us some limited power, under the EEA Agreement, to control immigration from the rest of the EU.”

    It gives us very little power to do that. North and Booker are basing this claim on the fact that Liechtenstein have power to control free movement, but that’s because they’re a tiny country of only 370000 people. So they’re a special case. We wouldn’t automatically ge the same rights. That would be up to the EU, but it’s looking very unlikely at the moment.

  29. The stuff you put up Cal is typical of North’s tripe. Combined with his “anything less than 99% agreement = you’re a moron” and his other favourite “Grow up=I’m your Daddy” make his blog less and less worth reading.

    He is a hard worker and a meticulous researcher but his kiss the state’s arse “values” are highly destructive.

  30. “It would even give us some limited power, under the EEA Agreement, to control immigration from the rest of the EU.”

    I think it’s a reasonable conclusion from May’s statements today, especially about having left one group with supranational jurisdiction we aren’t going to do it again thanks, that the EEA option as such is dead, because the ECJ still has too much scope for meddling, even indirectly via the EFTA court, and certainly the Commission and EP do since they still ultimately define the rules (from May’s point of view), even if EFTA’s side of EEA has lots of influence somehow. In other words, she’s realised that there’s a chance we could walk back into another supranational organisation “just for trade” that turns back into a trap.

    It will be interesting to see what May can get. Given that so far all her opponents have blown themselves up and indeed their parties, it would be unwise to dismiss her achieving a reasonable result as impossible.

    “Does anyone really believe this would happen? That all those German and French etc. companies that depend on our products would put up with that?”

    It’s not just products, its the parts of their products that the UK makes or designs, or the output of their own subsidiaries in the UK.

    I’m curious how much UK-owned companies depend on pan-European commercial networks (eg, supply or distribution chains). I sometimes wonder whether the Single Market has been more use to EU27 than to the UK (esp to judge by the apparent trade imbalance).

    Critics of the bargaining position that they export more to the UK than the UK exports to them (they’ve got more to lose) point to the much smaller percentage of GDP that represents as an EU27 *aggregate* compared to 3 or 4 times as much for UK->EU27. But since the EU27 is not a mercantile unit, aggregating doesn’t seem to be the right way to look at it. It’s not a single economy (hence the disaster caused by the foolish Euro). It’s the effect on each individual member state’s economies that matters, isn’t it?

    The value of the UK trading relationship for some of the bigger ones (given the overall imbalance) must be substantial. Their businesses will fret. Since they will still be trapped in the EU, and unlike the UK will be unable to explore bilateral relationships abroad independently, they’re stuck with that smaller market. Getting new external trade going involves placating a host of smaller nations (if it’s a “mixed agreement”). Then there’s the Euro. Doesn’t look great for German industry, does it, without a mutually reasonable deal?

  31. Another little mission for a liberated UK is to get the WTO back on track. I’m sure I can’t be the only person who is a little dismayed that an organisation that’s supposedly intended to “facilitate trade” has had two successive people in charge who mainly talk about how difficult it is, just won’t happen, or even how the UK specifically (not a minnow historically in trade terms) will spend some time in the outer darkness locked out of all world markets and unable to ship a bean (especially since that’s agricultural produce).

  32. And either way they’re still suddenly in a much smaller market with the Commission controlling the exits.

  33. Kabuki theatre.

    The PM knows the legal case can take away her right to activate Article 50, so she will just………….

    a) talk tough for a while
    b) call a snap GE to get a “mandate from the people”
    c) Stand on a Brexit platform like all Tories will
    d) Instruct government lawyers to “stand down” and let the Remainiac lawyers force through “Parliament must decide”

    At which point they will all “Vote their consciences” and agree that further negotiation is wise. The EU will throw them the odd bone, they will all say “aye” and that’s it – we Remain.

    I wonder if the Brits will riot at that point?

  34. I remember as many more will do how the French blocked imports of lamb and directed that VCRs were all channelled through (I think it was) Poitiers with minimal inspection facilities. Something similar could easily happen but it will increasingly demonstrate to the people in Europe that the EU is not their friend and may well hasten calls for further leavers.

  35. Mr Ecks – sorry, I think you have the wrong idea about who the enemy is.
    Being on the other side of negotiations does not make them the enemy.

  36. See the scots are bleating on about MSP veto again, purely blatant shakedown operation is what it looks like

  37. @BniC

    Like some of the other bleaters, often journalists with no stake in trade whatsoever, unlike even politicians, I do wonder just how important the Single Market, let alone the EU, actually is to Scotland. I’m ignoring regional and scientific funding because that’s effectively taken from our net contributions. I’m interested in significant businesses that will be seriously disadvantaged in practice, and why; and whether other trade terms would be sufficiently poor to make a business unviable.

  38. (Northern Ireland is a different case, because of the interaction with the Common Travel Area etc, so I’m starting with Scotland. )

  39. Ivor–The legal case isn’t worth shit and even May isn’t that stupid. I –and I hope every other decent person in the UK including most of the remainers with any sense– would do our very best to make the country ungovernable.

    Its time for action against the million or so members of the enemy class–the well-off, middle/upper class, cultural Marxist, London Bubble treasonous scum who comprise the Remainiacs.

    If I was PM the cunts at the Law Society would get a stark choice–they either de-frock and disbar forever any lawdogs involved in the legal crap or they cease to exist and Law becomes a trade no longer a profession.

  40. This makes perfect sense and is the first step – much easier to claim equivalence certainly if you take the existing legislation….

  41. Martin–you have a piss-weak approach to a gang who stand for brazen tyranny. The EU are and always have been the enemies of anything and anybody worth a damn. I was just too young to vote against the bastards in 75 and I thank Christ I’ve lived to put help my boots to them now.

    If I can live long enough to see socialism kicked to death in the gutter as it deserves I’ll die a happy man.

  42. Eur In Trouble Now

    Presumably all EU citizens in the UK at the time the Act is passed retain indefinite leave to remain by implication.

    If all EU legislation is to be enshrined into UK law presumably that means the freedom of entry of EEA citizens until legislation to the contrary is passed too. Keeping all options open…

  43. Mr Ecks – perhaps instead I know where the enemy is. And its not where you think. They are the opposition.

  44. @eur
    No, I don’t think so. That sort of EU law such as the Citizens Directive is phrased to apply to members of the EU which won’t be true for the UK. A citizen of a member state is a citizen of the union. The rights apply only to a union citizen in another member state. The UK will not be a member state. None of it therefore applies in any practical sense. There will be many such examples.

  45. “If all EU legislation is to be enshrined into UK law presumably that means the freedom of entry of EEA citizens until legislation to the contrary is passed too.”

    We’ll have to wait to see the details. Incorporating EU laws into UK ones is going to be necessary, but we can’t just import them all as they are, the appropriate modifications will need to be made (eg. some clauses assigning powers to EU institutions may need to be modified), and some laws we will neither need nor want to pass.

  46. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Really the point is that when an EU law is incorporated, it ceases to be immutable. Having the ability to change something is more important as a general principle than changing it.

  47. Eur In Trouble Now

    CHF

    Thanks, interesting. Getting this bottomed out quickly is important. I have a lot of friends and colleagues who are finding it hard to make decisions about cars, houses, schools etc. with so much uncertainty hanging over them. There’s real human & economic costs to being in limbo.

  48. ” I have a lot of friends and colleagues who are finding it hard to make decisions about cars, houses, schools etc. with so much uncertainty hanging over them. There’s real human & economic costs to being in limbo.”

    They can’t buy a car because of Brexit? Scrape them off mate because they sound like nutters.

  49. Ecksy
    I think Urine Trouble is referring obliquely to job insecurity. I still think its bollocks, though.

  50. Eur In Trouble Now

    Primarily I was referring to EU citizens currently resident in the U.K. Amazingly, not knowing their visa status two years hence deters large purchases.

  51. Urine Trouble:
    The visa status of EU citizens post-Brexit could be resolved now if only the arrogant EU would engage in some preliminary negotiations. If the EU citizens in the UK are postponing large purchases, so are UK citizens in other parts of the EU. The limbo is of the EU’s making.

  52. If these people have reason to believe that they would not qualify for a work permit – as would be the case for just about anybody in a foreign country – then maybe we don’t want them here.

  53. If Eur’s friends really think that the UK is vicious enough to screw them over like that, what are they doing there? And if they think that the EU is equally vicious, what are they doing supporting it?

    This is a non-problem – there will be indefinite leaves-to-remain all around, at least for those in work. And you can pretty much guarantee that the UK will go further and extend it to those on benefits because of an absolutist and expanded interpretation of “right to a family life” or something.

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