Tuesday, July 16, 2013

EU Justice? Were Brits defeated even with Trident?

The following extracts from Hansard are merely part of what the Home Secretary stood in the House of Commons and admitted yesterday, read the full speech here.

As things stand, the Commission proposes to change Europol’s governance and powers, potentially allowing it to direct national police forces and requiring us to share sensitive intelligence crucial to our national security. I believe that would be entirely unacceptable. These powers are unnecessary and would undermine our way of policing—and Europol has not even asked for them. The motive of the Commission appears to be nothing more than state-building. That is why we will not opt into the new Europol regulation and will never do so until those concerns have been put beyond doubt.
Some of my hon. Friends have been keen for me to address the question of the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. I have mentioned it already, but let me look at the issue once again. Between 1995 and the end of November 2009, 136 measures in the field of police and criminal justice were adopted in Brussels under the so-called third pillar. This meant that they were not the usual EU Acts and were not subject to either Commission enforcement powers or the full jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. As a result, we could not be told by others that we had not implemented things properly 

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and we could not be fined millions of pounds as a result. There were no European Court rulings that bound us, and we had a veto in negotiations.
When the last Government signed the Lisbon treaty, they changed the constitutional basis of the European Union, giving more powers over police and criminal justice matters to European institutions, and removing our veto in police and criminal justice. Now, at the end of a five-year transitional period on 1 December 2014, these pre-Lisbon measures become subject to Commission enforcement powers and the full jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.
In fact, the whole justice and home affairs structure since Lisbon takes too much control away from elected national Governments. The Commission or the Council propose a measure, and the UK has the right to decide not to opt in, but if we decide that the measure is in the national interest and we do opt in, we are subject not only to qualified majority voting in the Council but to co-legislation rules in which the European Parliament is considered to be an equal to the Council of Ministers. Elected national Governments are sidelined—and that is before we even consider the role of the European Court of Justice in interpreting the measure once it becomes binding.
Mark Reckless: Is the Home Secretary aware of the European Union Act 2011 in the context of what is required for a referendum? Section 4(1)(i) refers to

“the conferring on an EU institution or body of power to impose a requirement or obligation on the United Kingdom”;
while (j) refers to

“the conferring on an EU institution or body of new or extended power to impose sanctions on the United Kingdom”.
Surely an opt-in to the various 35 measures will do that and should trigger a referendum.
Mrs May: Let me give my hon. Friend the answer that I gave when the matter was last raised with me. I do not believe that opting back into these measures would trigger a referendum under the powers that the Government have. However, I think Members should welcome the Government’s statement that no future United Kingdom Government will sign a treaty unless a suitable vote is held among the British people.
Today a report on Britain's future nuclear deterrent will be published for consideration - is it not crystal clear from all this, that during the existing Trident programme Britain's greatest enemies have been those within who have delivered the nation into foreign control and placed it under alien governance?

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