MPs vote to block suspension of Parliament

Thursday, July 18, 2019

The House of Commons has passed a backbench amendment that is intended to prevent the next Prime Minister suspending Parliament to force through a no-deal Brexit.

The Bill effectively keeps Parliament open until December by requiring a fortnightly report on the progress of talks on restoring the Northern Irelend assembly.

It passed the Lords yesterday and today passed the Commons by 41 votes - 315 to 274.

Cabinet ministers to abstain from voting included Philip Hammond, David Gauke, Greg Clark and ex-leadership contender Rory Stewart.

Labour peer Andrew Adonis celebrated the result, claiming it could pave the way for a second referendum.

He tweeted: “No way there will be no deal! Ignore the Boris bluster - we are in course for second referendum.”

At the final leadership hustings last night, Boris Johnson once again declined to rule out suspending Parliament in order to force through a “do or die” Brexit on October 31.

However, his rival Jeremy Hunt has said he would rather resign than suspend Parliament.

Liberal Democrat Lord Newby said suspending Parliament to force a no-deal Brexit would be a “constitutional outrage”.

“This is the activities of a banana republic, not the mother of parliaments,” he said.

“We should do everything we can, however strange, to try to stop it. This is a clever, ingenious device and has our full support.”

However, Tory peer Lord True said the remainer majority in the Lords were guilty of “parliamentary chicanery” and will stop at nothing to prevent any kind of Brexit.

“I fear the Lords is getting itself into a worse and worse place by resisting Brexit, and the very future of the House is now in play,” he said.

Read more

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