Reading the EU Withdrawal Bill one finds crevice after crevice that will widen the divide

26 July 2017 | by Peter Hennessy


When I contemplate the 31 pages of the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill – more generally known as the “Great Repeal Bill” and published earlier this month – a number of thoughts occur.

The first thought is the stark power and geopolitical significance of clause 1: “The European Communities Act 1972 is repealed on exit day.” It led me to reach for the key trigger paragraphs in the 1972 statute that led us to “entry” day (1 January 1973) by signing the United Kingdom up to the three then existing treaties (the European Economic Community; the European Coal and Steel Community; the European Atomic Energy Community).

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