[JURIST] The UK Parliament [official website] published legislation [materials] Thursday to sever political, financial and legal ties with the EU. The legislation, known as the Great Repeal Bill, will be a significant step towards the country’s exit from the EU, which the UK hopes to complete by 2019. The bill will ensure that all EU laws put in place by Parliament will remain in force after the countries exit with the exception of the European Communities Act of 1972 [materials], the bill which originally made the UK a member of the EU. The British Labour Party [official website] has promised [Forbes report] to oppose the bill until it includes more provisions to protect workers rights. Without the Labour Party’s support, the bill is expected to fail.
Reactions to Brexit have been mixed. The President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, responded by saying, “I will not pretend that I am happy today.” Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour Party, claims the split will lead to a significant decrease in Britain’s GDP and fears that the Prime Minister will not maintain the protections for job security and living standards secured by the EU. In June a majority of UK citizens voted [JURIST report] to leave the EU due to a growing discontent with EU policies, including immigration. Implications of Brexit extend well beyond immigration, however. In March Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon sent a letter [JURIST report] to UK Prime Minister Theresa May formally demanding a second referendum on Scotland’s independence from the UK, stating that the removal of UK “not just from EU, but also from the single market” is not a move that the people of Scotland support or voted for, adding that such a move will have significant adverse economic consequences for Scotland. The same month EU President Donald Tusk laid out early plans [JURIST report] for negotiations with the UK.