Articles by Joe Armitage on the GC Blog and GC analysis
The attorney general, Geoffrey Cox, has reportedly advised prime minister Boris Johnson’s new government that a no-deal Brexit cannot be prevented from occurring on October 31st by the British parliament, even if it loses a vote of no confidence. He has advised that parliament’s passing of the Article 50 act – which authorised the triggering of Article 50 - and the withdrawal act – which abolishes the European Communities Act on October 31st - legally locks-in the UK’s departure, including one without a deal.
The UK stepped back from the precipice of a no-deal Brexit in April by requesting and receiving an extension of the Article 50 period up to October 31st this year. This has provided short-term relief from the immediate risk of a no-deal for many businesses on the continent and in the UK. But political turmoil over how to handle Brexit has again engulfed the UK in the last few days. Britain will have a new prime minister by the summer. The person chosen for the job will be selected chiefly on their Brexit position. The front runners have put no deal on October 31st at the centre of their platform. Could parliament stop them?
UK: Senior Director, Stephen Adams, Practice Lead for UK Politics and Policy, Alex Dawson, and Senior Associate, Joe Armitage, discuss the process of selecting a new leader for the Conservative Party, differences from the leadership race in 2016 and potential front runners.
As Brexit reaches a critical point, the UK parliament and the UK government seem poised to start a high-stakes battle over the future of the UK’s constitution. Parliament is set to reject the prime minister’s negotiated treaty and strongly opposes the idea of exiting the EU without a negotiated agreement. The government insists that this is what will happen without support from MPs. Convention says that parliament’s ability to stop the prime minister is heavily constrained, not least by its inability to table the necessary legislation. The prime minister’s opponents – assisted by the speaker of the Commons – have started to seek ways to change this. The consequence is potential constitutional reform on the fly, and under intense pressure. This note reviews the choices for parliament and some of the key consequences.
With British prime minister, Theresa May, stating that the Brexit talks are in their endgame, it is worth looking ahead at where the risks for the government will be most acute in the process required to ratify an agreement under the Article 50 framework.
UK: Senior Director, Stephen Adams, and Senior Associate, Joe Armitage, discuss the UK government's Brexit strategy and the likelihood of a second referendum.
The bid by private equity firm Melrose for UK-based advanced manufacturer GKN attracted substantial interest from politicians from both of Britain’s largest political parties. Conservative MPs were concerned that Britain’s clout in the international defence market would be harmed by the piecemeal sale of important parts of GKN’s business. Labour MPs sought to avoid any significant job losses in their political strongholds in the UK Midlands and elsewhere.
Transport for London (TfL) is the city’s transport regulator, responsible for operating multiple modes of transport for 1.3bn passengers a year, such as the Tube, the Emirates Air Line and London’s 700 different red bus routes. In addition to this operational role, TfL has a legal duty to grant – and police – the licences of private hire operators, traditional taxis and their drivers.
For some time now, the two main political parties in the UK have been battling for the same group of voters who feel disenfranchised, left behind and have faced what some have dubbed the ‘lost decade’ of stagnant wage increases. Since the general election, however, this battle has intensified, and it is now the case that more weight is being given by both parties to policies with a clear retail value.