New Secretary of State for Justice

The new Lord Chancellor is Michael Gove. Jack of Kent has a good post with mug shot: A new Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor.

As he writes, we will have to wait and see. He can’t really be any worse than the last one, can he?

But Grayling made things needlessly worse. His grand design for reforming criminal legal aid was unrealistic and botched, and the consultation had to start from scratch. Again and again the High Court found the Ministry of Justice to be acting unlawfully which, if you think of it, is a rather odd thing to happen to this particular department. Scarce departmental resources were used to promote a Bill – an extended press release dubbed the “SARAH Act” – which actually made no change whatsoever to the law of the land. And his personal stubbornness ended up with his spending £72,000 of taxpayers’ money to defend a prison books restriction which the bemused judge regarded as “strange” before quashing it.

It appears that the Human Rights Act is to be repealed pronto. For many myths on human rights and other information, see Adam Wagner’s new site Rights Info. I see that the Daily Mirror says you can live in another EU country if you want to enjoy human rights – thus overlooking the fact that the Council of Europe has 46 members and the EU 28 and that the rights haven’t actually been scrapped, just made harder to get: 13 basic rights you’re going to lose under the new Conservative government

But don’t worry, if you want to keep your absolute human rights, you can still move to the EU.

Or you can stay here and hope for the best.

I’m not sure how to move to the EU.

The Human Rights Act cannot be so easily repealed in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. There’s a useful post on this in the nicely named blog Lallands Peat Worrier:

Thus far, the Tories have had bugger all to say about the detailed devolved implications of their abolition plan — but they are politically explosive. Thus far, by focussing on the court politics of tactics and slogans, the media have singularly failed to take Conservative ministers to task on their woolly human rights thinking. Like Cameron’s pledge to “renegotiate” the European Union treaties without any real or realisable demands, abolition of the Human Rights Act is a slogan — not a worked out policy.

In other election news, Ronnie Carroll won 113 votes despite having represented Britain in the Eurovision Song Contest and being recently deceased.

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