The British government is proposing a mechanism to allow it to introduce ad hoc legislation to "correct" court judgments that ministers believe are “incorrect”, according to new Lord Chancellor Dominic Raab (pictured).
He told the Sunday Telegraph that he expected a consultation on his proposals to be opened within the next two months. The aim, he said, was to restore power to parliament.
“We want to protect and preserve the prerogatives of parliament from being whittled away by judicial legislation, abroad or indeed at home,” Raab told the newspaper.
Concerns about ECHR
“We want the Supreme Court to have a last word on interpreting the laws of the land, not the Strasbourg court,” the Lord Chancellor said, referring to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).
“If you read the negotiating history to the European Convention, it was never supposed to have extraterritorial effect… I think that’s wrong, that any court is effectively through judicial legislation, creating new law rather than just applying it,” he continued.
Raab also expressed concern about a requirement in the Human Rights Act that judges must take ECHR decisions “into account”.
“I don’t think it’s the job of the European Court in Strasburg to be dictating things –whether it’s the NHS, whether it’s our welfare provision, or whether it’s our police forces,” he told the newspaper.
Review had been set up
Commenting on the proposals to use legislation to ‘correct’ judgments, Raab said: “Where there have been judgments that – albeit properly and duly delivered by the courts – we think are wrong, the right thing is for parliament to legislate to correct them.”
Raab’s predecessor, Robert Buckland, set up a review of the Human Rights Act that had been due to report over the summer.
Its chair, Sir Peter Gross, had stressed that questions about Britain’s participation in the ECHR would not be on his agenda.