Wednesday 25 January 2017

Supreme Court's anti-Brexit judgement boosts UKIP's prospects

Yesterday the "Supreme" Court ruled by a majority of 8 to 3 that Theresa May can't use the Royal Prerogative to invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon treaty and begin the process of leaving the EU.

The Supreme Court isn't actually supreme because the decision could have been appealed to the EU courts but the Attorney General took the sensible view that anti-democracy campaigner Gina Miller and her millionaire backers have already cost the taxpayer enough money and the EU courts were never going to rule in the British government's favour.

Slightly making up for the fact that the Supreme Court ruled that a Guyanan millionaire, a Brazilian hairdresser and a bunch of banks and big businesses can make 17.4m votes worthless, they also ruled that the devolved governments don't have a veto over Brexit and that leaving the EU won't invalidate the Good Friday Agreement.

So what does the Supreme Court ruling mean? Very little in practical terms at this point in time. The British government intends to trigger Article 50 by the end of March still but it now needs to get a bill through both houses before it can happen. A short bill will do the job but Labour, the Lib Dems and the SNP have all promised to table amendments to complicate it and slow down the process. MPs and Peers from the LibLabCon parties, the SNP and Plaid have pledged to vote to block Brexit and if they can't then to try and water it down so much that we will still, to all intents and purposes, be in the EU.

As soon as the judgement was announced, bookies slashed the odds of Paul Nuttall winning the Stoke Central by-election to evens and that was before a poll was published today predicting a victory for the new UKIP leader with 35% of the vote.

The ruling and the reaction by MPs and Peers shows just how important it is that we get more UKIP MPs elected to make sure that our wishes are respected. The Supreme Court may have decided that our votes are worthless but when it comes to MPs every vote will count to stop Remain-supporting politicians from the other parties from frustrating the will of the people. A UKIP win in Copeland and Stoke will guarantee two more votes for Brexit.