Transcripts (perhaps draft) of the Article 50 ‘Brexit’ Appeal hearings at the Supreme Court

It is at MS 12585, and I identify that withdrawal -- and of course this is the point -- would deprive legislative, executive and judicial institutions which currently exercise power as regards the United Kingdom of that power and would mean that none of the legislatures and public authorities of the UK would operate within the framework, as they currently do, of European Union law. I make some other observations in those paragraphs.

I say that the only body which has the legal power to authorise and effect such changes to the constitutional law of the United Kingdom, indeed to the constitution of the United Kingdom, is the Queen in Parliament, and I invite the court to take the view that the claim by the executive in this case to effect such changes to the law of the land by an act of the prerogative is inconsistent with the principles, the constitutional principles, articulated in the Claim of Right Act 1689 for Scotland and the Bill of Rights for England and Wales. Those can be found at MS 6358 and MS 4152.

That 17th century legislation reflected and enacted in statute what I submit is an imperative rule of constitutional law which sets an outer limit to what may lawfully be done by virtue of the prerogative. The foreign affairs prerogative does not normally buck up against that imperative rule because of the dualist approach which we take to international treaties but when it does, in my submission, the prerogative gives way to that imperative rule of our constitution.

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