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Brexit and the British Constitution

Loughlin, Martin (2023) Brexit and the British Constitution. In: Jaeger, Thomas, Lehmann, Matthias, Somek, Alexander and Waibel, Michael, (eds.) Consolidating Brexit: The Future of EU/UK Cooperation. Jan Sramek Verlag, Vienna, Austria, 265 - 283. ISBN 9783709703205

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Three and a half years after holding a referendum on the question, the United Kingdom (UK) formally left the European Union (EU) on 31 January 2020. In that period there was not one of those 1,316 days when Brexit was not the subject of intense public discussion. Yet it would be difficult to find an issue on which the ratio between volume of noise and amount of insightful analysis has been higher. Much of the debate was generated by the sheer shock of the 2016 referendum result. Since 1649, when the English governing class executed Charles I only to discover that, after all, they still believed in the office of the king, there has rarely been so much post-hoc handwringing about what had been determined. And never before did so many take to the streets to express such support for a hitherto unloved technocratic project. Despite the cacophony of commentary, very little was devoted to a serious analysis of the constitutional implications of the decision. In different circumstances, the decision to leave the EU might have been a constitutional moment, an occasion for reconsidering constitutional fundamentals. But constitutional issues were resolutely avoided, with consequences still to be addressed. In this paper, I outline the main constitutional issues that have emerged and consider their implications. But I begin with a sketch of the character of the British constitution and its modern development.

Item Type: Book Section
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2023 Jan Sramek Verlag
Divisions: Law
Subjects: K Law > KD England and Wales
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2023 16:03
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 06:01

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