Friday

24th Nov 2017

UK parliament should have right to veto EU laws, MPs say

  • The House of Commons should be able to veto EU laws, according to 95 backbench Conservative MPs (Photo: @Doug88888)

The UK parliament should have the right to throw out EU laws, according to a letter from Conservative MPs to Prime Minister David Cameron.

In the letter, made public on Sunday (12 January), 95 Conservatives (out of a total of 225) stated that the House of Commons should be able to block new EU legislation and repeal existing measures that threaten Britain's "national interests".

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

A national parliament veto power would allow the UK to "recover control over our borders, to lift EU burdens on business, to regain control over energy policy and to disapply the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights".

The idea was quickly dismissed by ministers.

"I don't think it's realistic (that)... any one parliament can veto laws across the European Union," Justice Minister Chris Grayling told the BBC in an interview Sunday.

He added: "We have got to have a system that's viable. I'm not convinced we can have a system where one parliament can veto European legislation."

However, the UK government has already indicated that it would like to reduce the threshold required to trigger the 'yellow card' procedure which gives national parliaments the power to send legislative proposals back to the European Commission.

Under the Lisbon treaty, if one third or more national parliaments object to a new EU proposal within an eight-week window, then the Commission has to reconsider the proposal.

The procedure has been used twice since the Lisbon Treaty came into force in 2010.

The fresh row comes after legislation guaranteeing a UK referendum on EU membership in 2017 came under scrutiny in the House of Lords on Friday (10 January).

Liberal Democrat peers are expected to join forces with Labour to scupper the bill by tabling and adopting a series of amendments that would send it back to the Commons.

Peers are also likely to propose changes to the wording of the referendum question so that it would ask whether Britain should "remain" in the EU.

Although the unelected Lords cannot veto the bill, it could delay its progress by one year, bringing it close to the next general election, scheduled for May 2015.

Michael Dobbs, the Conservative peer piloting the bill, said that it was "not about being anti-European or pro-European; it is about allowing people to decide their own future. It will be a brave man who denies them that choice, and an even braver unelected peer."

Irish crisis may complicate Brexit summit

Snap elections are on the horizon in Ireland over the future of Irish PM's right-hand woman, three weeks before Irish PM is due in Brussels for a crucial Brexit vote.

News in Brief

  1. Merkel: Germany remains 'active' in EU
  2. Work with Israel, Egypt on gas exploration, says Commission
  3. Only seven EU states have 'advanced' stage climate plans
  4. EU dashes integration hopes of eastern countries
  5. EU approves joint Irish electricity scheme
  6. German president to launch 'Grand Coalition' talks
  7. Irish opposition 'threatens national interest', says minister
  8. SPD drops opposition to grand coalition in Germany

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Friends of ArmeniaSignature of CEPA Marks a Fresh Start for EU-Armenia Relations
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Energy Ministers Pledge to Work More Closely at Nordic and EU Level
  3. European Friends of ArmeniaPresident Sargsyan Joined EuFoA Honorary Council Inaugural Meeting
  4. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Leaders Should Press Azerbaijan President to End the Detention of Critics
  5. CECEKey Stakeholders to Jointly Tackle the Skills Issue in the Construction Sector
  6. European Friends of ArmeniaLaunch of Honorary Council on the Occasion of the Eastern Partnership Summit and CEPA
  7. Idealist Quarterly"Dear Politics, Time to Meet Creativity!" Afterwork Discussion & Networking
  8. EPSUStudy Finds TUNED and Employers in Central Governments Most Representative
  9. Mission of China to the EUAmbassador Zhang Ming Received by Tusk; Bright Future for EU-China Relations
  10. EU2017EEEstonia, With the ECHAlliance, Introduces the Digital Health Society Declaration
  11. ILGA EuropeFreedom of Movement For All Families? Same Sex Couple Ask EU Court for Recognition
  12. European Jewish CongressEJC to French President Macron: We Oppose All Contact With Far-Right & Far-Left

Latest News

  1. What Armenia's new agreement with the EU means
  2. Member states still lack definition of 'energy poverty'
  3. Chinese the most bullish on EU investment, report finds
  4. Lead MEP says EU is weeks away from deal on car approvals
  5. EU still giving gas projects 'fast-track' status
  6. Irish crisis may complicate Brexit summit
  7. UK to call out 'hostile' Russia at EU summit
  8. EU calls for better disease prevention