The terms of the Lisbon Treaty are quite clear. It will only come into force if all 26 countries that signed it, proceed to successfully ratify it. If the ratification procedure of any country were to reject the Treaty, and thereby prevent its ratification, that in turn renders the Treaty unenforceable, or void.
The europhile Helsinki lawyer Ralf Grahn, being well aware of this fact, has stated that the only way for the Lisbon Treaty to be rescued after the Irish referendum NO vote, which is a failure to ratify the Treaty on the part of Ireland, is for its terms to be changed. It will have to be made enforceable and have legal effect, even if not all the 26 countries that sign it, go on to ratify it, and then it only would have effect for those countries that do ratify it. The original Treaty cannot be amended. There would have to be a new Lisbon Treaty.
Faced with the intention of David Milliband to press on and attempt to ratify the first Lisbon Treaty through the House Of Lords today, Wednesday June 18th, Bill Cash made an application to the High Court yesterday that the royal prerogative is being used illegally. The Lisbon Treaty, as it was written is now dead, and attempting to ratify the Treaty now is not only illogical, but also illegal. His application to the court is made in the following terms –
Source – The European Foundation.
The claimant contends that the legal consequence for the United Kingdom of the ‘No’ vote on the Lisbon Treaty in the referendum held in the Republic of Ireland notified on Friday 13th June under Article 29 of the Constitution of Ireland 1937 (which is direct binding legislation) against the coming into force of the Treaty of Lisbon in the Republic of Ireland is that as from 13th June, the Treaty in relation to the UK (because of supervening impossibility and change of circumstances preventing the accomplishment of the original object or purpose and transforming the original consent of the parties to the terms of that Treaty). The performance of the Treaty in the UK is now otiose, terminated and therefore no longer an available lawful use of the Prerogative in the UK.
Furthermore, under the principles of customary international law the Treaty of Lisbon should be stayed (Clausula Rebus Sic Stantibus).
As admitted by the Foreign Secretary in his statement to the House of Commons at 5pm on 16th June “All 27 Member States must ratify the Treaty for it to come into force.” The Republic of Ireland can no longer do so in respect of this Treaty under their Constitution, thereby vitiating the object or purpose of the Treaty as between all 27 Member States including the United Kingdom and in these circumstances and for want of proper and lawful justification the continuing assertion by Her Majesty’s Government that the Treaty is effective in the UK is an abuse of prerogative power and is therefore justiciable by the Courts of the United Kingdom.
In accordance with Article IX of the Bill of Rights, this claim is directed at the decision to continue to ratify the Lisbon Treaty in the exercise of prerogative power and does not question the proceedings in Parliament.
The European Foundation expresses Bill Cash’s action in these terms –
Yesterday, Conservative MP, Bill Cash, sought a judicial review in the High Court to ensure that the Lisbon Treaty should not be ratified, given David Miliband’s decision to continue the ratification of the Treaty in the UK (statement on 16th June) after the ‘No’ outcome of the Irish referendum vote (on 13th June). He expects to hear today whether his application for judicial review of the Treaty will be allowed to proceed.
He must have a very good case.
XXXXXXAS OF 3.15 PM 18th June, no result known, but it must come through any time as it has to be given prior to the House of Lords vote, according to European Foundation.XXXXXX
This is what Bill Cash said in the Commons debate on June 16th, angling his question to Foreign Secretary David Miliband to link the Irish NO vote to the situation in the UK.
Will the Foreign Secretary accept that his statement is really quite disreputable given that this is quite clearly a democratic vote taken by people with full knowledge of what was going on? Will he not accept that it does affect the United Kingdom? We salute the Irish people, but the vote affects the United Kingdom because the treaty is no longer valid as far as the United Kingdom is concerned precisely because it has been overtaken by the no vote, which cannot now be changed.
UPDATE – 5.21 PM BBC Report on the Lords debate which is still continuing with many interruptions from protesters – LINK
EARLIER – See ‘Daily Mirror – David Miliband Backs Off Over The Lisbon Treaty’ HERE. If true, well done , Bill Cash. Although it sounds like a bit of window-dressing by Miliband to be honest. We await the result of Cash’s court action with interest.
EARLIER – June 16th’s PMQs discussion of Lisbon was reported thus in The Spectator’s Coffehouse –
Lisbon is today’s hot topic and Cameron had a few good lines cooked up. Lisbon was “a treaty he was so ashamed of, he had to sign it in a room all of his own,” he said to Brown. “If he wants a British view, why doesn’t he ask the British people.” At this point, David Miliband did one of his gestures where he screws up his face and rolls his eyes heavenwards. He really must learn not to do that, it enforces the [misguided] criticism of him as arrogant and aloof.
As so often, Brown dusted down out a script written in the mid-1990s. He referred to Maastricht (which he mispronounced, so it rhymes with “ostrich”) and said the Tories didn’t have a referendum then and wouldn’t do so in office. Cameron was ready for that. “The Prime Minister asks us if we want a post-ratification referendum. Ratifying what, exactly, after this Irish ‘no’ vote?” Precisely. Brown was later asked how he thinks a referendum would go, and his reply was simply extraordinary. “The last time there was a referendum it was won by two votes to one”. That was the 1975 referendum to join a Common Market – a fundamentally different proposition to the kind of political union outlined in the Lisbon Treaty.