The Speaker
Thursday, 30 May 2024 – 16:10

Parliament to be suspended from mid-September

The Queen has approved a request by the Government to suspend Parliament just days after MPs return to work.

The controversial move could see MPs have even less time to pass any laws in an attempt to block a no-deal exit from the European Union.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said it is ‘completely untrue’ that he is trying to stop MPs blocking a no-deal Brexit;

“We are bringing forward a new legislative programme on crime, hospitals, making sure we have the education funding we need.

“There will be ample time on both sides of that crucial 17 October summit in parliament for MPs to debate the EU, debate Brexit and all the other issues.”

MPs are reacting to the move by the government, with Labour MP Yvette Cooper describing the move as ‘deeply dangerous and irresponsible’, while Chuka Umunna from the Lid Dems tweeted that Mr Johnson ‘ is behaving like a tin-pot dictator’

Some reports suggest that Parliament could be prorogued as early as 9 September, to be followed by the Party Conference season and then a new Queen’s Speech and Parliamentary session from 14 October, just weeks before the UK is due to leave the EU.

Conservative Party Chairman James Cleverly has defended the plans as normal and as what ‘all new governments do’.

Prorogation is where Parliament is normally suspended for a short period before a new Parliamentary session begins. This is done by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister, and during the prorogation period, no debates or votes are held. Parliamentary sessions tend to last a year in the UK, but this session has been sitting for more than two years.

Conservative MP Dominic Grieve said, talking to BBC Radio 5 Live;

“If the prime minister persists with this and doesn’t back off, then I think the chances are that his administration will collapse.

“There is plenty of time to do that if necessary [and] I will certainly vote to bring down a Conservative government that persists in a course of action which is so unconstitutional.”

The SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said, “today will go down in history as a dark one indeed for UK democracy” if MPs do not come together to stop the plan next week.

Parliament is set to return from recess on Tuesday 3 September. 

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