Unless you’ve been living under a rock or, god forbid, without adequate WIFI for the last day, you will be aware that we are having a snap election in just over 7 weeks’ time on the 8th of June. While seemingly the entirety of the UK population is preoccupying itself by venting their joy and frustration into the bottomless void of Twitter, I would like to take a moment to talk about Brexit and what this means for the upcoming negotiations.
On 8 June 2017 voters will be at the polls again. The Prime Minister has called a snap election in order to bolster her plan for Brexit and unite the country.
The Fixed-term Parliaments Act (FTPA) passed in 2011 was meant to make the calling of early elections a lot harder for Prime Ministers. As I wrote back in July 2014, there were now several obstacles in way of a Prime Minister who wanted to go to the country early.
A snap general election will be held on the 8th of June. According to Theresa this is to unite the people of the UK, to unite the people of Westminster. She is the ‘Brexit Candidate’. She previously said she did not want a general election, but then again she also said previously that she wished to remain in the EU.
On the 29th of March 2017, the government of the United Kingdom officially informed the President of the European Council about their intention to leave the European Union within the next two years. This so-called triggering of Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty of the European Union will start a process, which will be complex with many unknown and unforeseen developments, challenges and problems on the way.
The recent Northern Irish Assembly Elections were significant in all sorts of ways, as this great piece explains. Northern Ireland may be to moving to a very different place politically. Unionism no longer has a majority, the Unionists may no longer hold a veto in the Assembly (via the petition of concern) and there is, on paper at least, an anti-Brexit majority in the new Assembly, that could govern the only part of the UK with a land border with the EU.
The gauntlet is down.
To the surprise of many Nicola Sturgeon announced today that she will seek a second referendum on Scottish independence to be held between autumn 2018 and spring 2019. She is set to ask the Scottish Parliament for permission to do so next, yet given that there is a majority of pro-independence MSPs (the SNP and the Greens), this part should be pretty straightforward.
The Saga continues – The UK Supreme Court Ruling on Article 50 and the Evolving Constitutional Crisis in the UK
The wait is finally over. The Supreme Court ruled on 24 January 2017 that ‘by a majority of eight to three … [the] government cannot trigger Article 50 without an Act of Parliament to do so’. Theresa May and ‘Team Brexit’, unsurprisingly, expressed their dismay and disappointment in the decision.
On the last afternoon of the final parliamentary session before the Christmas recess, Theresa May could put it off no longer and appeared before the Liaison Committee. In this blog post Dr Mark Bennister, Reader in Politics at Canterbury Christ Church University, utilises his new parliamentary academic fellowship to look at the Committee performance having watched the session from the Committee room.