Today the Supreme Court upheld the High Court ruling that Parliament must have the final say on Brexit, a ruling that the Government had challenged by taking it higher to the Supreme Court.
This ruling means that the Government does not have the authority to withdraw from the European Union under prerogative powers, but instead Parliament will need to endorse and give effect to our withdrawal from the EU just as it needed to when we joined.
Speaking at the hearing today, the Supreme Court said: “It would be inconsistent with long-standing and fundamental principle for such a far-reaching change to the UK constitutional arrangements to be brought about by ministerial decision or ministerial action alone.”
The Labour Party have commented that they will not frustrate the Article 50 process, and that they have accepted the referendum result. Emphasising that the House of Commons must have a vote on the final deal, Labour are committed to ensuring there is accountability throughout the entire process.
Commenting after the ruling had been announced, MP for Stockton North Alex Cunningham has said:
“It is absolutely right that Parliament has the final say on whether the country makes such a momentous decision to leave the European Union. I have been saying since the vote that I will support the will of the people, and a majority of those in my constituency, by voting to trigger Article 50.
“But this does not mean that I or the Labour Party will let the Government off the hook. We will be seeking amendments to the legislation to safeguard areas such as workers’ rights, and we will be holding the Government to account every step of the way to make sure that they do not use Brexit as a tool to justify their own political positioning.”