Duties in connection with Article 50 extension

Part of European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 5) Bill – in the House of Commons at 8:45 pm on 3rd April 2019.

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Photo of Bernard Jenkin Bernard Jenkin Chair, Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee 8:45 pm, 3rd April 2019

My hon. Friend has questioned the ability of the Act to be enforced. My Select Committee, the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee, put that question to Lord Judge, the former Lord Chief Justice. I asked:

“How would this be enforced?”

He replied:

“I think it could only be enforced politically by the House of Commons. Please do not think for one moment that anybody should be able to seek a judicial review. Not only would it be ludicrous for the judiciary to be involved in deciding a political question, but they would have a way out if anybody took that step, by saying that there is an alternative remedy—to go back to the House of Commons. That is the only way it could possibly be enforced, in my view. It would be up to the House.”

Is this not a completely useless piece of legislation?