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Last Tuesday’s decision by the Supreme Court to annul the prorogation of Parliament made headline news not just in the UK but across Europe. In this essay we look a little more closely at the judgment, and what it implies for the UK’s unwritten constitution and the relationship of the Judiciary to the other two arms of government, the Executive and the Legislature.
When Boris Johnson became prime minister, there were precisely 99 days to his self-imposed deadline of 31 October for his government to complete the extrication of the UK from the EU. Over half of those 99 days have already elapsed, and yet it is no clearer how, when or even if the UK will leave.
Boris Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament has been widely seen by his opponents as unconstitutional in some way, while at the same time a very clever manoeuvre. We do not entirely agree with either assessment.
In a little-noted speech earlier this summer on capital flows, Governor Mark Carney of the Bank of England raises two important issues: firstly that while capital flows on the whole benefit recipient countries they also have the capacity to do great harm; and secondly, in the struggle to avoid this harm, creditor nations and investors have their part to play.