Article 50 author responds to petition
The man who wrote Article 50 did not imagine his own country would be the one to use it. The revocation of Article 50 “isn’t politically doable” without a general election or referendum, the cross-bench peer who wrote the clause has said. Responding to a petition that passed 2 million signatures, Lord Kerr of Kinlochard said “One would have to go back to the people to get authority to do something different from what the people asked for”.
The peer who wrote Article 50 says it was drafted to protect EU countries against “Eastern European dictators” who did not abide by western values. It was a way of reducing the “legal chaos” if an unruly member decided to suddenly quit the bloc. Speaking on Wednesday evening, he said “We were thinking of a situation of which a country did not respect democracy, the rule of law, free press, that sort of thing”.
He continued “What we were devising was a procedure to try to reduce the legal chaos and uncertainty of somebody storming out in a huff. We never thought a grown-up, stable, democratic, Western European society would use Article 50”.
Commons leader Andrea Leadsom
dismissed the petition as not being on the same scale as the pro-Brexit vote in the 2016 referendum. “Should it reach 17.4 million respondents then I am sure there will be a very clear case for taking action” she told MPs.