Nasty, British and short: The dastardly plan to short-circuit parliamentary debate and lock in a no-deal Brexit
In Federalist No. 69, New York’s own Alexander Hamilton outlined differences between the new U.S. government promised by the Constitution and the monarchy of Great Britain, from which the young Republic had just broken. Among them: The king or queen "may prorogue or even dissolve the Parliament,” whereas the president can do no such thing.
That great advantage of having a Congress on equal footing with the executive would sure come in handy now for our friends across the pond, as new Prime Minister Boris Johnson anti-democratically maneuvers to lock out his country’s legislature to foreclose any possibility of an agreement not to his liking with the nation hurtling toward a no-deal Brexit.
What at the end of October is a not-at-all-amicable divorce between the rest of Europe and the once-United Kingdom, which will likely throw immigration and trade and who knows what else into something approximating chaos.
So Johnson, a whistle-off-the-cliff Brexiteer, asked the Queen to prorogue, or suspend, Parliament for an unheard-of five-week period leading up to the deadline. Her Majesty, as is customary and typically perfunctory, agreed.
She shouldn’t have. This is part of a sneaky Johnson plot to suffocate any deliberations that might avert the most painful consequences of the outcome the public voted for in 2016 but increasingly regrets.
BuzzFeed News reports he is also considering disrupting a Commons debate on Northern Ireland; creating new bank holidays to prevent legislators’ recall; and looking for ways to weasel out of a vote of no confidence.