Alexandra Sinclair and Joe Tomlinson: Eliminating Effective Scrutiny: Prorogation, No Deal Brexit, and Statutory Instruments

UK Constitutional Law Association

The decision to prorogue Parliament does not only have implications for whether Parliament can prevent a no deal Brexit, it also has important consequences for the making of primary and secondary legislation prior to exit day. We are particularly concerned with statutory instruments (SIs). There is already a strained position vis-à-vis the lack of scrutiny of secondary legislation, to such an extent that Parliament scrutiny is effectively incapacitated. It is clear that prorogation will exacerbate this incapacitation. In this post, we explain why this is the case.

Primary Legislation

When Parliament is prorogued all Bills fall unless expressly carried over to the next session. This means they need to start the legislative process again in a new session, if they are to be revived. At present, there are five Brexit Bills progressing through Parliament. Two of these, the Trade Bill and the Financial Services Bill are ineligible to be carried…

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