I have a little sympathy; doing anything for the first time is bound to be hard. But they have made it so much harder by breaking the promise to transfer all EU law and by a naked power grab.
As we in the Lords start to debate amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill, the crucial thing to watch is the scale of vocal support on the Conservative benches for any amendments to the bill. For example, I have already taken my name off two amendments (limit of four names) so that Conservatives could become signatories. Having Tory names signed on to the amendments significantly adds to the pressure on the Government, and opens the door for more Tories to support the issues.
I’ve put forward the same amendment on Animal Sentience that Caroline Lucas did in the Commons and am hoping for widespread support. Despite a lot of chatter, the government haven’t managed to put forward a better alternative to simply transferring over the existing policy principle from the EU into UK law.
I have co-signed five amendments, which cover the range of fundamental concerns I have about the bill.
1. Specific protections for the environment
2. Specific protections for citizens’ social rights
3. Retention of EU law which is currently missed out by the Bill (i.e. directives, principles, preambles)
4. Retention of legal causes of action and remedies for Govt breach of retained EU law (right to quash decisions, right to compensation)
5. Restrictions, requirements and procedures regarding the way Ministers can use the “Henry VIII powers” in the Bill to create new legislation
I voted for Brexit, but not this shambles of a Brexit. If the Government is driving away Leavers like me, making it impossible for me to vote for the bill, how much more angry must Remainers be?