UK’s Boris Johnson Appeals For Snap Election To Break Brexit Deadlock

UK's Boris Johnson Appeals For Snap Election To Break Brexit Deadlock - Surge Zirc SA
Boris Johnson wants a snap poll, but the timing of a potential vote could be up to the opposition / Photo file: AFP

UK’s Boris Johnson requested Thursday for an early election after a number of votes in parliament disappointed his hardline Brexit stance and brought him to a place without a majority.

Boris Johnson is expected to deliver an address in which he “will argue that it is now time for the people to decide after parliament has failed them so we can resolve this once and for all,” a Downing Street spokesperson revealed.

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The timing of the vote is still being argued as the nation move towards an October 31 divorce with the European Union without a major plan for what will follow.

But election is expected to be the deciding factor after a particularly bruising week of the British politics did just little to resolve the three-year impasse.

The main opposition Labour party-backing Daily Mirror tagged Boris Johnson “Britain’s worst PM” so far for advancing for a “reckless no-deal Brexit”.

Meanwhile, Daily Mail fired back by calling Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn a “chicken” for refusing to approve Johnson’s invite for a general election on October 15.

An opinion poll that was conducted by YouGov on Monday and Tuesday revealed Johnson’s Conservatives leading Labour party by 35 to 25 percent.

The European Liberal Democrat agitators were on 16 percent while the Brexit Party of populist Nigel Farage was in fourth place with 11 percent.

Parliament is working on legislation designed to prevent Johnson from breaking UK off from its major trading partners without a negotiated agreement with Brussels. They appeared on course to do so by Monday — a victory that would be accomplished just ahead of five-week shutdown of parliament Johnson controversially ordered at the end of last month.

Mainly, the bill is forcing Boris Johnson to seek a three-month Brexit extension until January 31 should no deal emerge from an EU summit in Brussels on October 17-18.

It passed the lower House of Commons with the support of 21 rebel Conservative MPs — who were promptly kicked out of the party.

The upper House of Lords ended an all-night filibuster by Johnson’s supporters early on Thursday and agreed to finish voting on the bill by Friday night. The bill could then end up in the House of Commons on Monday to consider any changes. It would then go to Queen Elizabeth II for final approval.

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Boris Johnson became the British prime minister in July on a pledge to deliver Brexit next month, “deal or no deal” and refuses to seek a delay. While considering all that, there is also no guarantee that the other 27 European Union leaders will grant one for the third time this year.

“When I hear the British saying ‘Give us three months more and we will solve the problem’, we can see that another six months would not solve the problem,” France’s European Affairs Minister Amelie de Montchalin said on Thursday.

Greens European Parliament leader Philippe Lamberts, speaking after a meeting with EU negotiator on Wednesday, said: “For all the PM’s bluster about getting a deal, there are no real negotiations going on in Brussels”.

The main debate within Labour and the smaller pro-EU opposition parties is when to schedule Britain’s third general election in four years.

Labour says it will only back the poll once it makes sure Johnson is unable to take Britain out without a deal.

“The problem that we’ve got is that we cannot at the moment have any confidence in Boris Johnson abiding by any commitment or deal that we could construct,” Labour’s finance spokesman John McDonnell told BBC radio.

“That’s the truth of it. So we’re now consulting on whether it’s better to go long therefore, rather than to go short. And that decision will be taken.”

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Boris Johnson will face another legal challenge on Thursday against his decision to order the suspension of parliament from next week until October 14, a move that his critics have called a “coup” and a “constitutional outrage”.

He will briefly turn his attention to foreign affairs on Thursday when he hosts Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US Vice President Mike Pence.

“Boris knows how to win. Don’t worry about him. He’s going to be okay,” US President Donald Trump told reporters on Wednesday.

Source: AFP

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