I reblogged a piece from Pride’s Purge recently.
My friend The Secular Jurist requested, quite rightly, further information upon which to form a judgement, in the form of questions.
Rather than repeat the words of those whose wisdom I have sought, I will provide links to sources rather more authoritative than I am. I hope that the following will provide a degree of enlightenment on this vexed topic.
Please read one, or some, or all these pieces. I think that one will find that they all point in the same direction; namely, that while proroguing Parliament is an annual event to tidy and reset the process of government, proroguing Parliament for the purpose of pushing through primary legislation of a contentious nature is a rare occurrence, one that pushes against the boundaries of the unwritten constitution underpinning the process and procedure of legislature in the United Kingdom.
Since everything in the Houses of Commons and of the Lords is ritualised, there is little happening therein which cannot but be regarded as symbolic.
A read through any of the linked sources will reveal the grave concern of many that the use of this power, or perhaps loss of power, to push through something against the will of our sovereign government, could cause catastrophic constitutional problems.
A previous Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, has raised the possibility that the next Prime Minister might be the last. Another former PM, Sir John Major, has vowed to fight this matter through the courts. Of course, the Queen is above challenge; the PM is not.
Adding to the brew are those government Members of Parliament who are beginning to resign so that they are free to vote against their 274 colleagues on the “List of Shame.”
Sir Alan Duncan, a Foreign Office minister, has resigned in the last two hours. It is widely expected that the Chancellor of the Exchequer, second only to the Prime Minister, will soon be resigning on the issue of Boris Johnson becoming PM and taking these extraordinary measures to subvert the will of the elected, sovereign government.
In this, it should be remembered that one of the claims promulgated in support of the British Exit from the European Union was the return of sovereignty to the UK Parliament; this rings hollow when one of the chief architects of the British Exit will, on his elevation to Prime Minister, subvert the will of Parliament.
As a final note, the Prime Minister will have been elected by approximately 0.25% of the population.
I just wish we had more sun here and that the bananas grew liberally on trees here.
UK Parliament Overview of Proroguation
LSE Article on Viability of Prorogation to Deliver No Deal Brexit.
Democratic Prorogation Undemocratic and Would Likely Trigger General Election.
One thought on “To Prorogue, pro & con.”
Reblogged this on The Secular Jurist and commented:
This is highly recommended for those interested in the possibility that the new U.K. Prime Minister (presumably Boris Johnson) could suspend Parliament in order to authoritatively enact a hard no-deal Brexit. Thank you, Gogwit!
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