A constitutional initiative to override political deadlock
Public anxiety and dismay as to Brexit political arguments reflects the similar mood and confusion in the House of Commons, which makes it extremely difficult for the public, poorly served by the media, to understand the critical issues — which in turn will make it more difficult to gain wide acceptance to find any kind of solution. In particular, it is noticeable that the Parliamentary discussions are failing to address significantly critical Constitutional problems, which may vary according to which solution is the outcome. It may be helpful to win public support if these are now more clearly explained and understood, yet only the Daily Express last Friday has made any significant move toward this.
Nothing would help more to achieve public understanding of the Constitutional hazards than to initiate urgently a direct appeal to the United Nations seeking their support for bringing the European Commission into strict conformity with the requirements of Clause 46.1 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties of 1969. Serving this Notice would also provide immediately justifiable cause for an extension to the Chapter 50 timetable and would demonstrate a firm and legally justified Government initiative.
In line with that application to the UN, the Government should then explain to Parliament, and in the media, the different constitutional hazards arising from the alternative solutions available. For example, remaining in the EU — whether temporarily or indefinitely — may well see the UK embroiled in the coming move to Qualified Majority Vote in 2020 and beyond.
This is contrary to the popular vote and that which our Government has promised to deliver. It is utterly inimical to our constitution. It will involve the creation of a European standing army and loss of control of our defence forces. We have been warned of very significant consequent damage to our intelligence services, there will be a loss of control of fiscal [tax] independence and currency, and loss of diplomatic independence to make international treaties. A full destruction of our constitutional autonomy and sovereign independence could, and most probably will, rapidly follow any arrangement that does not recover sovereignty, which was originally breached in the Lisbon Treaty. We must exit by initiating a supra-party-political consensus confirming our constitution.
The way forward from this is to:-
1. Make an immediate appeal to the United Nations making reference to a potential breach of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaty Making 1969 under Article 46.1, with a view to seeking an adjudication that the EU is attempting to force us to agree a treaty based upon fundamentally unconstitutional arrangements unacceptable to the British Crown. I repeat my earlier contention that the Attorney General previously discouraged this initiative because he had addressed the wrong clause in the Treaty. The correct clause states that no trading agreement may be entered into which significantly compromises the constitutional integrity of the responding nation, which is surely an accurate description of the European Commission's exit position.
2. If the application could be supported by Her Majesty, it would add significant force. This application to the UN could surely be assembled by a Government legal team within a single working day and be ready to be presented by the UK’s Ambassador to the UN on behalf of Her Majesty within 48 hours. Media coverage would immediately raise the entire public perception of the Brexit issue; put into perspective political loyalties; and engender, hopefully, a public patriotic response.
3. In the meantime, we must begin to educate the public and electorate as to the relative risks of both a Remain strategy and the reasons why a No Deal exit may be the only means to preserve our national independence and our continuity of our proud sovereign status. We must also show how this sovereign status will only be placed in ever greater risk unless we are set free and clear from the European Commission’s qualified majority strategy due to commence in 2020. If the UN do not uphold our complaint, then only the Leave without a Deal solution will achieve this.
4 The dire constitutional consequences of remaining will very likely force an abdication by the Monarch. She would either have to accept a state of perjury or maintain the Crown's honour by abdication. Her oaths of office will have become entirely corrupted such that no successor could undertake them, thus the total demise of the Crown is a very real and inherent risk in remaining.
Failure to terminate the membership of the European Union will continue to lead us all deeper into a treasonous liability arising from placing our governance subject to a foreign Potentate. That Potentate is unelected by the UK's electorate, is unaccountable to them and irremovable by them.
This is an absolute affront to the Dignity and Majesty of the Crown. It could foreshadow the total demise of the Monarchy.
When Brexit is finally done, Parliament must be shown to have discharged its absolute responsibility not to have reduced its own omnipotence.
In summary, the British public must be brought to an understanding that Brexit is a vital precondition for the maintenance of our sovereignty and independence and that our political forces are acting responsibly and with great integrity on behalf of the whole community. In passing, it will do no harm to remind all levels of Parliament in this process.
Lord James of Blackheath CBE