From the News:
A week on from the rendition of Ode to Joy by SNP Parliamentarians in Westminster in response to the Brexit White Paper, the Speaker of the House, Mr John Bercow, finds himself in hot water for exercising his own freedom of speech.
Calls for his resignation have drowned out the perhaps more significant news that as far as the EU is concerned, the UK will not be able to negotiate its exit and future relationship with the EU concurrently and while the latter proceed, the UK will remain under the jurisdiction of the CJEU.
The Supreme Court finally responds to the media attacks on the judiciary during the Miller case: Lord Neuberger said in an interview on BBC Radio 4 that politicians were too slow to defend judges after Brexit case, especially as the vitriol aimed at judges ‘undermined rule of law.’
The division of the Supreme Court in Miller was perhaps not as surprising as its unanimity on the devolution questions. Eutopialaw’s own Aidan O’Neill considers the potentially disastrous consequences of this aspect of the decision for the UK in an article here.
While Article 50 has not yet been triggered, a report from the CIPD and The Adecco Group finds that labour and skills shortages are already appearing in sectors of the UK economy that employ a high number of EU nationals.
Trade integration continues under the shadow of Brexit: a day after MEPs approve CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement), Justine Trudeau tells the European Parliament that the whole world benefits from a strong EU.
Meanwhile back in the UK all eyes are focused on February 23, the day of by-elections in Stoke-on-Trent and Copeland – where the electorate voted by majorities of 70 % and 62% respectively to leave the EU.
All eyes will then turn to France, where Marine Le Pen has been given high odds of winning the French presidential election. Her father however has lost his case in Luxembourg against the European Parliament, which has taken action to recover monies paid to him and his parliamentary assistants.
Finally, BBC Radio 4 launches its series ‘Brexit – A Guide for the Perplexed’ on February 17th – will the Government tune in?
Recent Case Law from the CJEU:
State aid: In the view of Advocate General Kokott, tax exemptions for Church-run schools do not, as a rule, breach the prohibition on State aid
Approximation of laws: The Court of Justice delivers its judgment in the case involving breast implants made of inferior quality industrial silicone
Claims for Subsidiary Protection: an applicant for subsidiary protection does not have the right to an interview but an interview must be arranged where specific circumstances render it necessary in order to examine the application with full knowledge of the facts.
Law governing the institutions: the EU, acting on its own, may conclude the Marrakesh Treaty on access to published works for persons who are visually impaired
Comparative advertising based on prices as between shops having different formats and sizes is unlawful in certain circumstances
DFON: According to Advocate General Mengozzi, Members States must issue a visa on humanitarian grounds where substantial grounds have been shown for believing that a refusal would place persons seeking international protection at risk of torture or inhuman or degrading treatment
Citizenship of the Union: The General Court annuls the Commission decision refusing registration of the proposed European citizens’ initiative entitled ‘Minority SafePack – one million signatures for diversity in Europe’