…the original motivation for the holding of a referendum seems not to have been the public interest, but the particular interest of a political party. Especially in cases relating to local authorities, the allegation of a corrupt abuse of a public power is familiar – for example, a planning decision favouring a friend of the chairman of the planning committee. It would be bold to extrapolate such a case to the level of national government. But it is worth noting that it would be a challenge not to the Referendum Act of Parliament – challenging the validity of an act of parliament would raise formidable problems of general constitutional law – but to the actions of the government in the process leading up to that legislation.
So what is the next step? Is anybody going to question the legality of the referendum bill and of the results? Who would that be? It’s good to know the legal background, it would be even better what happens next and who does it. We certainly can’t count on Corbyn’s Labour to initiate the process, considering how self-satisfied he is with his performance during the campaign.
Panic not: there are good reasons to believe the government’s decision to withdraw from the EU would not be legal, and that the UK is not going anywhere