I downloaded a copy of the Judgement (a link to which is here) and within about half-an-hour had worked out that it is only marginally based on the European Convention on Human Rights and has everything to do with an EU Directive with the catchy title “DIRECTIVE 2004/58/EC OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 29 April 2004 on the right of citizens of the Union and their family members to move and reside freely within the territory of the Member States”.
The first point to make is that it was most unwise for Mr. David Cameron to launch a major assault on the Human Rights Act 2000 and to call yet again for a British Bill of Rights to replace it on the back of this case which does not depend on the ECHR for its basis. One wonders whether he bothered to speak to any of the many lawyers in the Shadow Cabinet or on the front bench before doing so. As it is he opens himself up to the joint accusations of opportunism and being wrong.
Secondly, this taken with the apparent fiasco of the attack by Mr. Cameron on the hospital closures issue, raises the question of what is going on in the research element of the party at CCHQ. One is bound to ask if people with the right qualifications are being employed and whether they are being properly paid. We wish to be led from the front, but troops will not follow commanders if they think that they and the Staff Officers are not doing their jobs properly. It is immensely frustrating.
Thirdly, there is a valid point to be made which is that this Directive starkly reveals the extent (all but complete, I am afraid) to which the United Kingdom and its people have lost control of the ability to control who does and who does not live here and in effect we no longer control our immigration policy. The Chindamo case is one which should be used to assault the EU and those who wish to cheat us out of a Referendum on the enormous further surrenders of power which the Constitution Mark II entails.
Fourthly nothing I have read or said makes me resile from the proposition which I made yesterday that we ought to withdraw from the ECHR and enact a new progressive and modern British Bill of Rights which reflects the world in which we now live not that of 1950 when the ECHR was drawn up and which is consonant with the Common law and the British way of life.