The Speaker
Saturday, 18 May 2024 – 10:10

Quiet week? No chance – previewing a week in politics

Parliament is suspended so it’s going to be a pretty quiet week for politics – that’s it, week in preview complete. No chance.

While MPs won’t be at work in the Commons this week, we doubt they’ll be heading off for another holiday. In fact, if things go badly for the government this week, MPs could be called back to Parliament very soon.

Here’s our preview of the week ahead in politics. As always, we make no guarantees that any of this will actually happen because let’s face it, some things in this world can be quite unpredictable – I mean who expected Norwich City to beat Premier League champions Manchester City 3-2 on Saturday evening?!? Anyway, back to politics – if you’d prefer to listen to a roundup of the week in politics plus a look ahead at the week to come, you can listen to our podcast here.


Election Watch

Let’s start away from the UK for once and preview the week’s elections taking place around the world.

Tunisia – Tunisians are voting in their Presidential elections today, Sunday 15 September. The country’s economic crisis and security fears have dominated the election campaign. Over twenty candidates are running in the unpredictable first round of what is the second presidential election since the 2011 revolution in the country. The candidates include the prime minister, Youssef Chahed and Nabil Karoui, a populist who is currently in prison on corruption charges that he denies.

Israel – Snap legislative elections are due to be held in Israel on Tuesday to elect the 120 members of the 22nd Knesset. The Knesset is the unicameral national legislature of Israel.

Madeira – Elections in Portugal’s region of Madeira are due to be held next Sunday. The current president, Miguel Albuquerque from the Social Democratic Party, will be seeking a second term in the elections.


The ‘Incredible Hulk’

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Sunday that the UK will break out of the “manacles” of the EU like the Incredible Hulk. The comparison has sparked a fair bit of conversation on social media and also led the European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator, Guy Verhofstadt MEP to say, “Even to Trumpian standards the Hulk comparison is infantile. “Is the EU supposed to be scared by this? The British public impressed? Is this Boris Johnson whistling in the dark?”

The Prime Minister has insisted there have been developments in Europe towards achieving a Brexit deal in the last few days. We’re not really sure what these developments are or whether they will amount to anything – again, the government has revealed little about negotiations with Europe on Brexit.



The UK Parliament has been suspended or ‘silenced’ as some opposition MPs liked to put it. The Parliament has been suspended until 14 October, however, some MPs are trying to get the suspension ruled as being illegal. This week, the highest civil court in Scotland said “The Court will accordingly make an Order declaring that the Prime Minister’s advice to HM the Queen and the prorogation which followed thereon was unlawful and is thus null and of no effect.”

The government insist the suspension was lawful, and a case will now be heard in the UK’s Supreme Court on Tuesday. A ruling will then likely be announced later in the week. It is expected the court could say that the suspension is purely a political matter. However, if the court did rule the suspension as unlawful, MPs could be returning to Parliament very soon. For more about what could happen, listen to the conversation in our podcast here.



The Liberal Democrats Autumn Conference is underway in Bournemouth and is set to continue until Tuesday. On Sunday, the party voted for a policy which would see the Lib Dems pledge to cancel Brexit if they win a general election. Speaking on the Andrew Marr show, Liberal Democrats Party leader Jo Swinson said “Everybody can see that we are stuck, that Brexit is in a mess and there needs to be a way out of that”.

In other conference news, the Labour Party conference is due to take place starting next Saturday. Watch out for a preview of the conference in the coming days.


So, there’s a look at the week ahead in politics. For the latest political news from the UK and beyond throughout the week, follow us on social media @speakerpolitics.

Photo: Supreme Court of the United Kingdom | Photo Credit: Cary Bass-Deschenes via Flickr under licence (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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