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Brexit round up- Week commencing 16 September 2019

Matrix’s Legal Support Service provides a round-up of Brexit-related links and news.

Brexit and the UK constitution

  1. The House of Commons descended into chaos in the early hours of Tuesday as MPs rejected Boris Johnson’s bid to hold an election and attacked his decision to shut down Parliament.
  2. MPs back moves forcing Number 10 officials to hand over messages on Parliament shutdown.
  3. Speaker of the Commons John Bercow made a teary farewell to MPs, announcing he would step down by October 31 (watch here). In a speech last night, Bercow took aim at Boris Johnson’s threat not to abide by the law passed last week blocking a no-deal Brexit, making clear that there is no way of him getting away with it so long as he is in the Speaker’s chair.
  4. Scottish judges rule PM’s suspension of parliament is unlawful. The Appeal court said the prorogation order was ‘void’ but failed to issue an injunction for MPs to return. The UK government has said it is disappointed with the Scottish court’s decision and will appeal. Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland the court dismissed a case against no-deal Brexit stating that claims that a hard border would damage peace process are political, not legal issues.
  5. Boris Johnson suffered another ministerial resignation with the departure of work and pensions secretary Amber Rudd over the weekend.
  6. The Financial Times reported that should the UK hold a snap general election, a Conservative victory is perfectly possible, even likely. Despite the unrest in Johnson’s cabinet, the Conservatives still have a comfortable lead in the opinion polls.

The UK’s Post- Brexit Deal with the EU

  1. The Lib Dems will go into that election pledging to cancel Brexit entirely and revoke Article 50.
  2. There has been talk in recent days that Boris Johnson might opt for a Northern Ireland only backstop, in other words placing a regulatory border down the Irish Sea rather than across the island of Ireland. The scope to do this has grown because the DUP are no longer decisive players at Westminster, given that the government has no majority.
  3. Johnson softens his Brexit stance on Irish border. PM says Northern Ireland could follow EU rules on agriculture and food after Brexit Johnson clashes with Varadkar on direct rule in N Ireland.

Impact of Brexit on the Economy

  1. The government has published its official Yellowhammer assessment of what could happen to the UK economy and society in the event of a no-deal Brexit.