01 Sep 2019
Demonstrations have been taking place across the UK against Boris Johnson's decision to suspend Parliament in the run-up to Brexit.
Thousands of protesters took to the streets in cities including London, Manchester, Leeds, York and Belfast.
Parts of central London were brought to a standstill, as people chanted: "Boris Johnson, shame on you."
Mr Johnson's plan to prorogue Parliament prompted an angry backlash from MPs and opponents of a no-deal Brexit when he announced it on Wednesday. ...
Meanwhile, a petition against the prime minister's plan to suspend Parliament has received more than 1.6 million signatures.
And on Friday, former Tory Prime Minister Sir John Major announced he will join forces with anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller to oppose the decision to suspend Parliament in the courts. ...
The government is expected to table a motion to hold a general election* on 14 October if it is defeated by MPs opposed to a no-deal Brexit on Tuesday.
Boris Johnson said he did not want an election, but progress with the EU would be "impossible" if they won.
Tory rebels are joining forces with Labour to bring a bill designed to stop the UK leaving the EU on 31 October without an agreement.
It would force the PM to request a delay to 31 January 2020 in that event. ...
* Another general election is not due until 2022.
Hmmm, what are the chances the EU would agree to another extension if Boris called a general election on the 14th of October? It wouldn't be a certainty, especially since it would be abundantly clear to the entire EU that the election was purely a cynical political ploy. So given that an extension would require unanimous agreement ... it only takes Ireland or France to be fed up with BJ and then the UK crashes out.
All of which is possibly exactly what BJ plans to happen, i.e., calling a general election is another tactic to guarantee no deal Brexit.
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These comments are my own and do not represent the opinions of 2degrees.
I don't think it's a cynical ploy. I think it's the only thing he can do if Parliament blocks no deal this week.
He's staked everything on leaving on the 31st October. There's no way he can back down on that now unless the EU comes up with something radically different and that's not going to happen.
Some polls also suggest he could end up with a healthy majority although the situation is so volatile over there that it's anybody's guess what an election result could be.
- Government loses Commons majority after Conservative MP Phillip Lee defects to Liberal Democrats
- Tory rebels are to join Labour to bring forward a bill later designed to stop the UK leaving the EU on 31 October without an agreement
- If they succeed, Prime Minister Boris Johnson could call a snap general election on 14 October
- Former Chancellor Philip Hammond says he believes Tory rebels will back the bill - and vows to fight deselection
- Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has said he is ready to go to the polls - but some in his party are suggesting otherwise
- Mr Johnson has insisted the UK must leave the EU on 31 October - with or without a deal
9:11pm UK time
Results of the vote for Commons control ...
The motion to take control of the House of Commons agenda has been passed by MPs.
(paving the way for a bill designed to block Boris Johnson from taking the UK out of the EU without a #Brexit deal)
9:59pm UK time
Whip to be removed from rebels
Government sources have confirmed that all 21 Conservative rebels are having the whip removed.
Removing the whip effectively means expelling the MPs from the parliamentary party.
While it's all very amusing to see the UK in a state of parliamentary chaos only rivaled by Italy, I can't see how blocking Boris' plans makes it any easier for the UK to move forward.
The sticking point seems the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland and since Westminster is unlikely to allow Ireland to reunify just yet that problem remains to be thrashed out.
It seems just as much the EU's problem as Westminster's.
The New York Times - Boris Johnson Loses Brexit Vote, Calls for an Election
Sept. 3, 2019
LONDON — British lawmakers on Tuesday rose up against Prime Minister Boris Johnson, moving to prevent him from taking the country out of the European Union without a formal agreement, in an epic showdown that has the country on the verge of a snap general election.
After losing his first-ever vote as prime minister*, Mr. Johnson stood up in Parliament and said he intended to present a formal request for a general election to lawmakers, who would have to approve the motion.
A little over a month ago, Mr. Johnson, a brash, blustery politician often compared to President Trump, swept into office with a vow to finally wrest Britain from the European Union, by whatever means necessary, even if it meant a disorderly, no-deal departure.
Now, Parliament has pulled the rug out from under him, and Mr. Johnson is at risk of falling into the same Brexit quagmire that dragged down his predecessor as prime minister, Theresa May. ...
* The last time that this happened to a new PM was in 1793 - Pitt the Younger
Taking no deal off the table means the UK has no leverage at all when negotiating with the EU. They could come back and say, for example, OK you can have an extension but it's for 10 years and in that time you have no say on what goes on in the EU. How can the UK respond to that sort of demand if they can't walk away?
The Irish problem should have been top of the list for sorting out from day 1. Instead they argued about things like the cost of the divorce bill.
This mess is the result of a leave vote with a remain parliament and civil service. All the talk about stopping a no deal exit is just cover for stopping the exit altogether. It's pretty rich that the pro EU demonstrators outside parliament have banners about defending democracy - they seem to have conveniently forgotten about the result of the democratic vote 3 years ago. And it is irrelevant why people voted the way they did.
And they are supporting the largest undemocratic political organization in the world. Anyone remember the elections for the EU President or Commisioners? No? That's because there aren't any.
If the vote had gone the other way 3 years ago I would have said 'that's a pity, oh well maybe have another go in 5 or 10 years if the mood is still the same' but in these social media driven times it's as if the remainers think it's ok to overturn the referendum decision by shouting the loudest.
The Washington Post - Boris Johnson’s populist playbook implodes
September 4, 2019
The right-wing populist canard rests on a premise that works only if the populists never get elected.
You know how it goes: Politics is corrupt, the populist “alone” can fix it and those who oppose him are enemies of the state who thwart his ability to fix things.
The kicker of course is that right-wing populists, being snake oil salesmen and anti-government nihilists, don’t know how to fix much of anything, and after all the huffing and puffing, the public gets the idea the populist cult leader is an incompetent charlatan. ...
The Post reports that Prime Minister Boris Johnson, under public assault for his scheme to suspend Parliament to push through a no-deal Brexit, has now lost his majority:
In Parliament, Johnson was heckled and catcalled from almost the moment he stood to speak. He noted that Tuesday was the 80th anniversary of Britain’s entrance into World War II and said “This country still stands then as now for democracy for the rule of law.” He was met with jeering laughter.
He insisted that Britain was making progress in talks with European Union leaders about an orderly Brexit, which drew more mocking laughter.
Aided by repeated demands for “Order” by House Speaker John Bercow, Johnson said his opponents’ proposal to delay Brexit by another three months after Oct. 31 would “Force us to beg for yet another pointless delay.”
As Johnson was speaking, Conservative member of Parliament Phillip Lee dramatically crossed the isle to join the opposition, depriving Johnson of his majority.
It is widely suspected that Johnson has no real plan to avoid Brexit, thinks crashing out of the European Union won’t be so bad and, in any case, there will be others to blame. He’s tried the anti-democratic approach and gotten whacked on the snout. ...
IMO the UK never had any leverage over the EU anyway. If the EU back down and re-negotiate, whats to stop other EU members trying the same thing? Potentially that destabilises the entire EU.
I live in the UK and am pro remain, and pro those attempting to stop the UK from shooting it self in the foot.
What ever happens now, this country will stay divided for an extremely long time on this.
It's pretty rich that the pro EU demonstrators outside parliament have banners about defending democracy - they seem to have conveniently forgotten about the result of the democratic vote 3 years ago. And it is irrelevant why people voted the way they did.
The referendum was non-binding, the information given to the public about the impact of a leave vote was based on lies, there was foreign interference in the process and lack of transparency (at the best) on campaign funding. If Brexit was able to be achieved with a social and economic impact even close to what the public was led to believe, it would have already happened.
Referendums are a stupid idea - we saw that here with a "contentious" referendum on the so-called "anti-smacking" legislation, we'll no doubt see another demonstration next year, with rather than any rational vote, the public "debate" instead dominated by extremists at both ends of the scale - and facts ignored. They're also divisive, so whatever is to happen with the UK, half of the population will be livid for a generation.