Prout was also involved in debates surrounding constitutional reform, particularly around the office he was shadowing, the Lord Chancellor. After Irvine's retirement in 2003 the Lord Chancellor's traditional duties were split three ways as part of the concept of separation of powers.
He also received several court appointments: became an assistant recorder for the Wales and Chester circuit, a recorder in 2000 and deputy High Court judge in 2005. In 1997, the new Conservative Party leader William Hague appointed Prout as the Shadow Lord Chancellor to Lord Irvine of Lairg, one of Tony Blair's closest intimates. Prout generally acquitted himself well against Irvine, warning of the risks from adopting the Human Rights Act 1998 and calling for Irvine's resignation in 2001 after it emerged Irvine had invited solicitors and barristers to a Labour Party fundraiser. Following the September 11, 2001 attacks, Prout was a key opponent to government legislation to make it easier to extradite Britons to the United States, though he ultimately gave up after the government introduced it for a third time.
He survived to the 1994 European Parliament election but lost the supposedly safe seat Herefordshire and Shropshire by nearly 2,000 votes.
Major's election prompted a thaw in Britain's relations with Europe. Prout supported Major's negotiation of the Maastricht Treaty while the Prime Minister supported Prout's efforts to gain entry into the EPP group. Finally, in April 1992, the EPP voted to accept the Conservatives as "allied members" of their grouping, though not the corresponding European political party, with Prout becoming a vice-chairman of the EPP group.
Despite this, by November 1990 when Thatcher's position was under serious threat, Prout informed the 1922 Committee that 20 of his group wanted her to leave, whilst just five wanted her to remain as Conservative leader.
Though he criticised the President of the European Commission Jacques Delors - describing his blueprint for the future European Union as trying to "graft superfluous social engineering" to the single market - Prout proved to be somewhat pro-European and was visibly uncomfortable with Margaret Thatcher's euroscepticism during the 1989 European Parliament election.
In 1966 he joined the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development in Washington D.C. for three years before taking up a research fellowship at Sussex University and then becoming a lecturer in Law.
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