UK Impact

European Human Rights convention in POWER post Brexit as British equivalent ‘shelved’

THERESA May has scrapped plans for a British Bill of Rights – because the country can only handle one massive constitutional change at a time.

Justice Secretary Liz Truss acknowledged that the Tory party’s manifesto pledge was not feasible at the moment as Britain prepares to enter into the long and wrangled negotiation process of finally divorcing from Brussels.This means the Euroepean Convention on Human Rights will remain in place until after the General Election in 2020 – but even then there is no guarantee it will be replaced with a bespoke British concept.

It was the Labour party that introduced the European directive into British law, but the Conservatives appear content to let the legacy of a by-gone pro-European era remain.

Theresa May EU Human RightsGETTY

Theresa May has decided to shelve the removal of the EU Human Rights Act

Ms Truss said: “Give that we are leaving the European Union and we will have the Great Repeal Bill going through Parliament, clearly hat is going to signify a major constitutional change.”So the British Bill of Rights is not something we can do at the same time as we are putting through the Great Repeal Bill.

“That is going to affect the Constitution. It’s important we only do one constitution reform at a time.”

Liz Truss EU Human Rights BrexitGETTY

Liz Truss met with the Prime Minister to discuss plans for the Human Rights bill

Parliament will no doubt be consumed by Brexit and the Great Repeal Bill for the coming years, but the move paves the way for Mrs May to pin her 2020 election campaign on establishing a British bill.That is a political move that will chime with Tory Eurosceptics and could help mobilise her ground base when she attempts to wipe Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party off the map in 2020.

Mrs May’s decision could see her engage into another war of words with Nicola Sturgeon, whose SNP have outspokenly opposed the British Bill of Rights, preferring to remain part of the EU.

The notion of a British Bill of Rights was floated by David Cameron in 2010, but is was put on ice during the Tory/LibDem coalition.
It reemerged in 2015 when Mr Cameron put the idea in his manifesto, after referring to Britain’s human rights relationship with the EU as being “a total mess”.Prior to the 2010 general election, Conservative party leader David Cameron proposed replacing the Human Rights Act with a new “British Bill of Rights”. After forming a coalition with the Liberal Democrats, these plans were shelved and reinstated only after the Conservative party won an overall majority in the 2015 general election.

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