Prolonging the acquis: a blueprint for the Brexit transition

paper.pngIn a report published this week Piet Eeckhout and Oliver Patel assess the options for a Brexit transitional arrangement. They argue that the most realistic option is for the full body of EU law to continue to apply in the UK, while the UK simultaneously ceases to be an EU member state. The report’s conclusions are summarised here.

 

Continue reading

What young Britons really think about Brexit and their prospects outside the EU

file-20171031-18738-wj0gv4What do young people in the UK – who overwhelmingly voted Remain – make of the outcome of the Brexit referendum, and how is it affecting their life plans? Avril Keating, Director of the Centre for Global Youth, UCL Institute of Education, heads a research project examining the impact of Brexit on young people. Some initial findings are presented here.

In the immediate aftermath of the EU referendum, much was made of how devastated young people were by the result. A survey by Lord Ashcroft suggested that over 70% of young people aged 18-24 voted Remain, while almost 60% of over 55s voted to Leave.

Continue reading

In Defence of Miller

gina-miller.jpgIn June 2016, Jeff King, Professor of Law, UCL and Nick Barber, Associate Professor of Law, University of Oxford, argued that parliamentary approval was required before Article 50 could be triggered. At the time, their arguments were (wrongly) dismissed by various politicians and constitutional experts. Here, they present a rigorous and legally dense defence of the High Court’s recent decision that parliament must give its approval before the government can trigger Article 50. 

Miller v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union has stimulated quite a bit of debate. Some criticism of the decision has been well-informed and thoughtful, whilst some of it has been, to put it charitably, less worthy of engagement. In this post we respond to what we view as the strongest arguments against Miller, taking account of the Government’s written case for appeal. We discussed the reasoning used in the case in an earlier post written with Tom Hickman, and will not repeat that explanation here. This post assumes knowledge of that earlier piece, which was written with the lay reader in mind. The present piece, more legally detailed, is necessitated by the quite subtle replies to the argument in that original post and to the judgment in Miller.

Continue reading

Support for Brexit is no longer a minority viewpoint on the British left

man-hands-reading-boyIn recent years, Euroscepticism has frequently been associated with the right of the political spectrum in the UK, but a number of figures on the left have also voiced their support for the country leaving the EU. Imke Henkel writes that while criticism of the EU’s handling of the Eurozone and migration crises is understandable, such problems should be used as the basis for stronger engagement from the British left at the European level.

Among the British press, which overall shows a bias for leaving the EU, the Guardian is seen as one of the few papers with a friendly attitude towards remaining. However, there are pro-Brexit voices within the Guardian, too. On 20 May, Larry Elliott, the paper’s Economic Editor, made his argument for Britain to leave the EU: “Brexit may be the best answer to a dying Eurozone”. The piece culminated in the provocative conclusion that the EU was “the USSR without the gulag”.

The article sparked a strong response from the Guardian’s former Director of Digital Strategy, Wolfgang Blau. The German born journalist had moved to the Guardian only in 2013 from his previous role as editor in chief at the German digital publication Zeit Online. He left after just two and a half years in December 2015 to become the Chief Digital Officer at Condé Nast International. In February 2015, Blau had been one of four candidates in the internal hustings to succeed the outgoing Guardian-editor Alan Rusbridger. With just 29 votes out of 964 Blau came last by a wide margin. Still, his early departure from the Guardian surprised many in the industry. Continue reading

Brexit referendum folly

Stefan Rousseau/Press Association Images. All rights reserved.Jan Zielonka, Professor of European Politics at the University of Oxford, writes that the consequences of the Brexit referendum are bad for both Europe and Britain, regardless of the result. This piece is part of the UCL European Institute’s commissioning partnership with openDemocracy on ‘Brexit Divisions’.

The EU referendum in the United Kingdom was intended as a festival of democracy, but it has proved to be an exercise in political madness. Brits pride themselves on being sensible and pragmatic people, but they embarked on a sentimental journey into the unknown. Rational arguments are being set aside while populists are having a party. The prospect of a referendum with an uncertain result has already caused a great deal of disarray, and those who count the costs of a possible Brexit should realise that major damage to Europe and the United Kingdom has already been done. Continue reading