KT edit: UK Supreme Court's decision puts Boris in the dock

By tradition when Parliament is normally shut it reopens with the Queen's speech.



Published: Tue 24 Sep 2019, 9:00 PM

Last updated: Tue 24 Sep 2019, 11:17 PM

For the mother of all Parliaments to find itself in a not so pretty pickle is unprecedented. For the first time the Prime Minister of United Kingdom has been found as having acted illegally in proroguing Parliament and blocking the sovereign body. When the Supreme Court stated that stymieing the constitutional right of the people's representatives to conduct their work is unlawful, it dealt a body blow to Boris Johnson and placed him in a corner. There has been no such action in the history of Britain where the royal head, the Supreme Court, and the elected leader of government have pitted themselves against each other. Technically, the Queen rubber stamps the closure of Parliament on the advice of the prime minister which is how it went down. Her Majesty agreed to do so but the legal proceedings that followed have seen fit to determine this decision to be bad in law.
By tradition when Parliament is normally shut it reopens with the Queen's speech. This is standard procedure and prorogation is not a major issue except that in this case the timing, so close to Brexit deadline of October 31, was seen as a deliberate ploy to obfuscate and thwart any attempt by the House to agree to a second extension from the EU over the Britain's departure. It is going to be awkward for the Queen to address the very House that she agreed to lock out albeit on the recommendation of her Prime Minister. The courts have ruled otherwise and for Boris the moral right to continue is now uppermost in the minds of the people and a very embarrassed royal. Although it does bring Johnson closer to his threat of being found 'dead in a ditch' rather than ask the EU for an extension of another three months, it seems most likely that the clumsy, almost absurdly comical departure from the EU has now triggered the need for another referendum. With Boris out on a limb, the deadline looming and the option of a 'no deal Brexit' fading away, this national crisis seems to have no way out of the maze except to go back to the people.
To save his job Johnson will literally have to eat his brave words of 'nothing doing, Oct. 31 it is come hell or high water' and seek a concession from the EU that will probably enjoy extending a little suspense before relenting to a ninety-day breathing space. But this is not the issue. It is whether a deal can be made and that option is also looking bleak. The question then arises over why the EU should offer an extension if nothing is going to change. For now, the impasse continues.
 


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