Friday, 31 March 2017

A Tory Brexit with Tory Laws?

If I trusted the Tory Government  then  maybe the Great  Reform Bill  would be the quickest way to "return powers" to the UK, IF. 

A line by line scrutiny by both parliaments of each clause would take ages and clog up other legislation,

But tjis os the Tories we are talking about and it may be that they use the opportunity to ditch legislation they are not happy with , without parliament having a say

We could wake up the day after the UK finally after leaves, to find we have lost much of the legislation that protects our democratic and human rights/

We could even wake up without a Welsh Assembly or Scottish Parliament  or see their powers diminished  

As Peter Black points out

Over on Twitter, former Assembly Minister, Leighton Andrews poses an interesting question. He suggests that chapter four of the Brexit Great Repeal White Paper suggests unravelling all the devolution settlements.

4.4 To provide the greatest level of legal and administrative certainty upon leaving the EU, and consistent with the approach adopted more generally in legislating for the point of departure, the Government intends to replicate the current frameworks provided by EU rules through UK legislation. In parallel we will begin intensive discussions with the devolved administrations to identify where common frameworks need to be retained in the future, what these should be, and where common frameworks covering the UK are not necessary. Whilst these discussions are taking place with devolved administrations we will seek to minimise any changes to these frameworks. We will work closely with the devolved administrations to deliver an approach that works for the whole and each part of the UK.  
4.5 This will be an opportunity to determine the level best placed to take decisions on these issues, ensuring power sits closer to the people of the UK than ever before. It is the expectation of the Government that the outcome of this process will be a significant increase in the decision making power of each devolved administration.
4.6 Legislation that is within the competence of the devolved legislatures or ministers giving effect to EU law will also need to be amended as we leave the EU. We therefore propose that the Bill also gives the devolved ministers a power to amend devolved legislation to correct law that will no longer operate appropriately, in line with the power we propose should be held by UK ministers. 

At first glance  the governments claim that this could mean more powers for the devolved powers  has merit . But it also means that .the principal of "power devolved is power detained " goes out the Window and Westminster decides that any laws "repatriated" from Europe to Westminster that affects devolved issues should mean that these should no longer be devolved issues.

If the experience so far is anything to go by then the Bills promise that  "We will work closely with the devolved administrations to deliver an approach that works for the whole and each part of the UK".  Is meaningless. As our First Ministers have largely been kept in the dark and their concerns ignored.

It will take someone cleverer than me to unpick the hidden intentions in the wording of this Bill but even I can see that it gives the government and one Party the power to avoid scrutiny and leave us with a Brexit that in effect leaves us with a Tory Brexit and Tory Laws.

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