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Government joins legal battle to prevent suspension of Parliament

02 Sep 2019 3 minute read
Jeremy Miles AM. Picture: National Assembly

The Welsh Government has issued a statement confirming it has been granted permission to join the legal fight, fronted by activist Gina Miller, that is seeking to prevent the UK government from suspending parliament before the Brexit deadline on October 31st.

The suspension was confirmed after the request of the Tory Government was approved by the Queen last Wednesday.

Counsel General Jeremy Miles AM wrote: “Whatever the government’s stated reasons for it, the effect of such an unusually lengthy prorogation is to curtail Parliament’s ability to properly debate and scrutinise the terms of the UK’s exit from the European Union; and to deprive Parliament of the opportunity to exercise its will, should it wish to do so, through legislation.

“The wider ramifications of shutting down Parliament to force through a no deal Brexit are grave. The issues raised have significant implications for the protection of the rule of law and the fundamental constitutional principles of the UK.

“It is important that the interests of the National Assembly for Wales are represented in ensuring a functioning constitution. The dialogue between the National Assembly and the Westminster Parliament and how Parliament takes into account representations of the Assembly is a key part of the constitution and must be protected.

“The Assembly has given its consent to Parliament to legislate in devolved areas, trusting that Parliament would have the opportunity to pass that legislation. By closing down Parliament, the Prime Minister has frustrated this process and has prevented Parliament from legislating for the terms of exit. This may result in the Assembly having to bring forward new legislation in very limited time in these crucial areas.

“Therefore, in accordance with my power under section 67 of the Government of Wales Act 2006, on Friday I made an urgent application to be granted permission to intervene in the legal action launched by Gina Miller. My application was granted by the High Court and I have filed written representations in support of Miller’s case which highlight the implications of the government’s decision for Wales.”

The former Conservative Prime Minister John Major has also joined the case to be heard in the High Court in London on Thursday along with the shadow attorney general Shami Chakrabarti, who was granted permission last week to join the case on behalf of the official opposition.

Labour’s deputy leader, Tom Watson, has said he will seek to intervene in his role as an MP. Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson also sought permission from the court to join the case.

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Luke Jones
Luke Jones
4 years ago

What took them so long? There again the so called leader of the opposition JC sat on the fence.
Some say Wales voted for Brexit, small margin, Scotland voted Remain. As did the North part of Ireland. If Wales narrowly voted Remain, would have been England’s choice anyway.
Free England from our family of European Nations. An independent Wales, Scotland and a United Ireland.

jr humphrys
jr humphrys
4 years ago
Reply to  Luke Jones


John Young
John Young
4 years ago
Reply to  Luke Jones

With such a large proportion of the population of the people living in Wales being English it would be very interesting to know whether there was a majority for leave among Welsh people living in Wales.

Jonathan Edwards
Jonathan Edwards
4 years ago

We need to keep Welsh Labour moving. Intervene to stop Brexit, so bad for Wales. Campaign for Remain, in Wales interest. Next stop Constitutional Convention for Wales. Many in Welsh Labour would go for Dominion Status. Which was fine as a start for Ireland. So go for that too! Its not difficult when the bandwagon starts to roll.
PS – brief a Welsh barrister for the Supreme Court this time. Look at the whole array at the annual Legal Wales Conferences. JM, you’re not saying Welsh lawyers aren’t up to it are you?

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