We’ve done the judicial review topic as it relates to the U.S. in other threads. As some of you may know, I support the concept but am suspect of it and think it should be restrained. But how does that work in countries like the UK without judicial review?
First, my understanding is that in the UK, Parliament is absolutely supreme and that nothing it passes can be overturned anywhere else. Second, the UK has an unwritten constitution that is a collection of principles handed down throughout the ages.
Nonetheless, if Parliament passes a law that says every man must set his own dick on fire, well, constitution be damned, it’s now the law and you better get your zippo out.
So, let’s say I am a judge (justice?) of the UK Supreme Court. There is a criminal appeal before me where a person is imprisoned due to an act of Parliament which indisputably violates the unwritten UK constitution. Let’s not try to fight the hypo: this law is undisputed in its unconstitutionality.
As a judge, am I supposed to keep this person imprisoned despite the unconstitutionality of his imprisonment? This seems to be the nail in the coffin for the argument against judicial review in the U.S., but it seems to be permitted in the U.K. So my question is why? Why should a judge in the UK keep someone in prison based upon an unconstitutional law?