‘The day of the constitutional lawyer has come’ says Prof Dougan

Liverpool Uni law lecturer gives evidence to House of Commons Treasury Committee on all things Brexit

Lead1

The law lecturer of the moment, Michael Dougan, professor of European law at the University of Liverpool, this morning gave evidence to the a Commons Select Committee, and according to twitter was, as expected, a complete star.

Eleanor Drywood, a senior lecturer in law at Liverpool Law School, tweeting:

And Marianna D’arcangelo tweeting:

Announcing that the “the day of the constitutional lawyer has come” he made a number of telling contributions to the debate.

First, there will be no way of joining the European Economic Area (EEA) without huge political and economic consequences. And to do so the UK would need to avoid a possible 32 vetoes (Swiss, 3 European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries, 27 EU countries and the European Parliament.)

Second, the claim that section 112 of EEA might allow the UK to exempt itself from free movement legislation Dougan derided as “an armchair lawyer’s argument”.

Third, he explained that his “main worry is it is a job that cannot be done by parliament alone, and requires enormous delegation of power to executive”. And with members of the executive resigning on a daily basis goodness knows who will be left standing to take on the workload.

Finally, and intriguingly, he said he had been informed that the French legal service has told the French government that it would be possible for UK to trigger Article 50, and then revoke it at a later date

The Prof has spoken: Even when you think the debate on Article 50 might finally be over it could just be lying dormant before sparking back into life. You can pull the trigger on Article 50 but you can never completely kill it off.

22 Comments

Lord Harley of Cockgoblin

I am very concerned that if we leave the EEC, I won’t be able to rely on my proposed article 6 and 14 arguments at the impending SDT hearing against me.

I have also retained Lord Pinnock QC who has adviced me that I may also have a claim under article 3 for inhuman and degrading treatment because the SRA are biased against me. Would that also be effected?

(9)(2)
Desillusioned Lawyer

Wait a minute… are you referring to ECHR articles here? I’ll be assuming so, as Art 3 IDT is an ECHR right violation. That said, you can join the saddeningly long queue of those needing still (presumably after some legal training – given your hearing is at the SDT) to be educated on the difference between the EU (the EEC stopped existing in 2009) and the Council of Europe. That latter is what binds the state parties (all 47 of them) to the ECHR and has absolutely nothing to do with the EU (NB: EU Charter rights take vast inspiration from the ECHR, that instrument is rather under-used). The UK leaving the EU will not affect its obligations under the ECHR. Any Art 6 (+Art 14) claim you might have had beforehand will remain valid, all other things equal.

(5)(0)
Desillusioned Lawyer

All things considered, this may just be trolling!

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Lord Harley of Cockgoblin

Lord Pinnock QC called it an advice not an advise so does that meant that I can ask him to pay some of the money back? It was quite expensive and I am probably going to need all the money I can get to pay for more advice (advise?) because I don’t understand the really long post above about the ECHR. What’s that? Also if we are still staying in the EEC do you think that my article 3 claim would succeed?

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Anonymous

‘The day of the constitutional lawyer’ doesn’t exactly have the same ring to it as ‘the day of the jackal’, but whatever.

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Lord Harley of Counsel

Fraser J may have thrown out my application for an injunction but refused to give the Law Society their costs.

Everyone knows I don’t know what I am doing so no surprises there. But the Law Society look even more ridiculous than me this time.

(3)(0)
Bachelor's of law - LL.B

If he was that good… Why not become an mp? Piping up now because his job is on the line? Having chose to specialize in history. We all know it’s hurt many EU lawyers but say what you really think!! Going on like the sun constantly shines out of EU backside (aka Greece) He’s wrong about many things.. Especially his spiel regarding the UK having to vote to invoke article 50? After researching myself, I found the p.m. does in fact have the prerogative power to invoke article 50 without the say of the commons. One sided and narrow minded views. And can I just add for everybody consideration what would happen if the U.K. reversed the decision (like Holland, like Ireland) there would be a full scale riot with up to at least 5-17m people, so yeah.. Carry on against the will of the people, at your peril! He can always move to Scotland if he’s that upset.

(2)(21)
LLM in EU Law.

Dear LLB,

Scotland happens to be in the United Kingdom, as does England, and both are in the EU until a law is made in Parliament. Do you remember Parliament? That’s the place you did not want to see usurped by the EU, but you are happy to see usurped by the PM. I am thinking of a song by Alanis Morrisette right now, can you guess what it is?

Oh, and I have an LLM, which means I am smarter than you.

LLM in EU Law

(20)(1)
BPTC post-grad (maybe I'll employ you as an assistant one day)

Probably explains why you are so bitter. That isn’t an LLM in EU law… It’s an LLM in EU history, so get your facts right.

I will become a barrister next.. I won’t settle like you and become a boring lecturer! Why not aim high and do the Bar? Didn’t fancy the competition, you scared man. Just like Douglas who never got into politics because he lacked self-belief. Too little too late I’m afraid.

P.S. I have just graduated and will be starting the BPTC September… I think we call that cheque, mate.

(3)(10)
Anonymous

Do you mean Checkmate?

BPTC post-grad is clearly a shoo-in for chambers- All you need is to complete the BPTC and a bucket full of self belief and the big dolla will be yours!

(2)(3)
Anonymous

A few things wrong with LLB’s post:

– Poor syntax in name. You are either hold a Batchelor’s in law or are a Batchelor of law. Not some bastardisation of the two.
– “Why not become an MP?”. No doubt because he would rather be afforded a modicum of respect. Respect that used to be given to Members of Parliament but in the past decade or so seems to have evaporated, and respect which you should be giving him, too.
– Daring to suggest that “having researched my[your]self”, you are better placed to comment than a professor in EU law. It’s precisely morons like you thinking you have the right to pollute the world with your opinions (i.e. not facts) that has got us halfway into the mess we are in.
– Your full scale riot point ignores the fact that the majority of those who voted leave are not law-breaking (NB rioting is illegal for a number of reasons; not sure they covered that in your esteemed course of legal study at the University of Boondoggle), and are in fact in the majority of cases old enough to know better (as has been well-documented).

So pipe down.

(9)(3)
Anonymous

Morons like you. I’m sorry, I forgot everybody on leave had no idea whatsoever. I am sorry also I upset the apple cart by going against the status quo. I know that has been your life long position, just follow the crowd.

Along with Douglas, at the end of the day… Why is he taking this to parliament? Maybe weighing up his career options after realising he’s a lecturer in history, not law.

You think a riot wouldn’t occur? We are a bunch of morons… Do you think we care about the law? You disregard our view at your peril. We’ll see the outcome of that. You sound extremely bitter.

(1)(3)
Bazza

He did not take this to parliament, parliament invited him to give evidence and no doubt he was paid to give his interpretation of the law. So yes, having no idea appears to be applicable to you. Advocating rioting and the subsequent destruction of some assets of the country you care sooo much about does appear to be a particularly moronic attitude.

(5)(1)
Anonymous

Little surprising that this man is being indulged so much. There are dozens of European professors and very eminent silks (who obviously wouldn’t have time for this nonsense anyway), but it is a little peculiar that this Monnet Professor alone is provided with a platform to emphasise his determined “Remainer” views.

“The people who rubbished that deal should be ashamed of themselves”: is that legal analysis? Come on.

Ultimately the UK’s new relationship will be based on realpolitik not “constitutional law”, as this Euro-fanatic suggests.

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