Brexit Could Face Long Delay, Supreme Court Judge Warns

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The Government could be forced to repeal and replace existing European Union legislation before it even starts the Brexit process, potentially severely delaying Britain’s EU exit, a Supreme Court judge has said. In comments that will cause concern to Brexit supporters, Baroness Hale of Richmond also said that the June referendum was “not legally binding” and that a simple Act of Parliament authorising the government to begin the Brexit process could be open to a legal challenge. The Times quotes the judge as saying: “The argument is that the European Communities Act 1972 grants rights to individuals and others which will be lost if the treaties cease to apply,” she said. “Such a result, it is said, can only be achieved by an Act of Parliament. Another question is whether it would be enough for a simple Act of Parliament to authorise the government to give notice, or whether it would have to be a replacement for the 1972 act.” Baroness Hale added: “What is meant by the exercise of the executive power of the state? To what extent can it be exercised in a way which may undermine the exercise of the legislative power of the state? We do