It looks like MEPs from across the EU Parliament are trying to get involved in UK domestic politics on Brexit.

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In response to news that the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, had obtained the permission of Her majesty to prorogue parliament from early September to mid October, Members of the EU Parliament have been getting together to start the process of triggering a formal investigation by Brussels into UK domestic politics.

This involves the use of the Lisbon Treaty Article 7 procedure, which says;

"On a reasoned proposal by one third of the Member States, by the European Parliament or by the European Commission, the Council, acting by a majority of four fifths of its members after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament, may determine that there is a clear risk of a serious breach by a Member State of the values referred to in Article 2."

With Article 2 saying:

"The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities. These values are common to the Member States in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail."

And the eventual punishment could be suspension of voting rights or putting sanctions in place – but that, I think, has to be done unanimously.

According to the Independent this push for an emergency question to the EU Commission calling for action under Article 7 has the backing of 'dozens' of MEPs including some from France, the Netherlands, Romania, Spain and Denmark.

MEPs have until Monday to get their names on this document.

This proposal contains terms like "an offence against the democratic process" and "constitutional outrage" and says it will prevent parliament from exercising its legislative function of providing checks and balances especially with regard to Brexit etc.

And it ends by asking the EU Commission to look into what it calls a 'a clear risk of a serious breach by the UK' of the values referred to in Article 2 of the Lisbon treaty.

A UK Lib Dem MEP at the heart of this activity, Antony Hook, said: "We will all recall disturbing events from history to which this could be compared." I take that as a very nasty statement indeed, putting the prorogation of parliament on the same level as previous atrocities carried out in mainland Europe – atrocities that the UK had a massive hand in stopping.

So, the first question I have is, when will one of these be raised over the activities of the French government with respect to the Yellow Vests? – I won't hold my breath on that one, though.

Anyway, parliament has been prorogued regularly over centuries – and while we have been members of the common market right through to the EU – and it will continue to be regularly prorogued after we have left the EU.

The UK government under Boris Johnson has not changed the law in an undemocratic manner, he has not stopped a planned election or interfered in any planned vote or referendum.

The UK constitution has not been changed to exclude anyone or any group of people and the government will have the same powers before, during and after prorogation.

Elections will still be held freely and fairly in accordance with our own constitutional requirements that were agreed whilst we were members of the EU.

The government has used existing law to shut down or prorogue parliament.

And of course this prorogation will end prior to the UK leaving the EU.

Therefore, no grounds as far as I'm concerned.

So, the UK is leaving the EU and it looks like the EU's political representatives want to punish the UK for using its own well established laws – and they claim that the UK is the nasty one getting in the way of negotiations.

Sources:

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/boris-johnson-parliament-suspended-eu-rule-law-investigation-latest-a9082606.html

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/228848/7310.pdf

https://www.dw.com/en/what-is-article-7-of-the-eu-treaty/a-41876855

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