Watching the live feed of the proceedings

  Forum Editor 12:16 05 Dec 2016

in the supreme court on the Brexit issue, has brought home to me just how complex the legal arguments are.

What at first seems like a pretty straightforward matter turns out to be not so straightforward at all, at least not when the lawyers get into it. The hearing will last four days, and we'll hear the verdict in January.

  canarieslover 14:02 05 Dec 2016

Whenever lawyers are involved it always get long winded. How else will they generate enough work to keep them in the manner to which they have become accustomed.

  Quickbeam 14:48 05 Dec 2016

Fascinating, not...

  Forum Editor 14:57 05 Dec 2016

"Fascinating, not..."

Nevertheless, it is an extremely important matter, and is the first time that all eleven supreme court judges have sat to decide a case.

  x123 15:58 05 Dec 2016

Not sure about anyone else but this business has certainly made me read up on the histories and treaties of our United Kingdom!

No. �/p>

  Forum Editor 17:36 05 Dec 2016

"...are they speaking any known language?"

I know what you mean, but if you concentrate (and are interested enough) it's not too difficult to follow the gist of what is being said. It's a real insight into how a country accumulates layer upon layer of laws and amendments over time.

  Toneman 17:45 05 Dec 2016

When I worked in legals we had a corridor lined with Halsbury's Statutes...I'm not holding my breath...

  Aitchbee 18:12 05 Dec 2016

I reckon four judges would have been more than adequate for the job in hand.

click here

  morddwyd 19:18 05 Dec 2016

The bottom line is should the government of the day have the right to ride roughshod over the will of Parliament, no matter what justification they claim for doing so.

As has been said, this is all about process, not politics.

  Forum Editor 21:13 05 Dec 2016


"should the government of the day have the right to ride roughshod over the will of Parliament"

The first thing to say is that the government is itself composed of members of parliament. The second thing to say is that surely the will of the people is paramount, not parliament's. Parliament is composed of the elected representatives of the people, and the people have expressed their wish to exit the EU. Parliament cannot frustrate that will in any way.

What is being discussed is whether the government of the day can exercise its executive power to implement the wishes of the people as expressed in the referendum result, without consulting parliament first - Theresa May has already stated that any negotiated terms would be debated in parliament before we exit.

It will be interesting to see how the supreme court judges arrive at a decision. This is new ground.

  Forum Editor 23:24 05 Dec 2016


I know what you mean, and to a certain extent we are dancing on the head of a pin here.

Parliament is the people - expressed in terms of elected representatives. The idea is that said representatives act in the best interests of their electors, in line with the policies espoused by the parties they belong to. They were elected on a manifesto, and they are supposed to strive to fulfil the policies they outlined.

Parliament itself cannot act against the will of the people who elected its members, and in that respect the wishes of parliament are not paramount. A referendum tests the will of the people, and in this case it was made clear from the outset that the result would be binding on the government.

What will be, will be - the supreme court will rule, and that ruling will be binding on the government too. By and large, I think it's a good thing that the whiole issue is being looked at in this way. Whatever the result, we will exit the EU anyway - nothing, not even the supreme court, can stop that.

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