An Irish High Court will hear a case designed to disrupt or altogether annul Britain’s exit from the EU. The case will be heard before Christmas.
British Prime Minister Theresa May plans to trigger Article 50 of the EU Lisbon Treaty in March, which in theory begins an irreversible process of negotiation that culminates with exit.
However, there is someone who wants to make the process reversible.
Jolyon Maugham, a tax lawyer, wants the process to become reversible and, if possible, to treat leaving the European Economic Area (Single Market) as a separate question.
Maugham argues that if economic projections of the Brexit camp prove false, then the electorate should be allowed to change its mind. “If the facts change, it is possible that people’s views will change,” Maugham told Reuters.
Maugham argues that only if Article 50 can be revoked it is possible for the Parliament to “fulfill its obligation to deliver a Brexit for the 100%.” Just like a government can be outvoted if it does not deliver on an electoral program, so should people be allowed to change their mind if the deal was not the one presented to them when they cast their vote.
The claimant has crowdfunded £70,000 in 48 hours to cover the legal costs. They intend to reach the European Court of Justice.
Luxemburg via Dublin
The point of taking the case to Ireland is to arrive at the European Court of Justice in Luxemburg.
Technically, Maugham makes the argument that Ireland has a lot to lose if Britain leaves the Single European Market, both economically and socially, as EU law underpins the Good Friday Agreement and the relationship between the Republic and Northern Ireland.
In an ongoing trial in London that will determine the British Parliament’s role in Brexit, the court assumes that the process is not reversible. However, Maugham suggests the case could be referred to the European Court of Justice via Ireland to be made reversible.