LONDON – British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is pushing for a preliminary election for a third time, urging Parliament to agree to a nationwide vote in mid-December. Johnson attempted on two recent occasions to call an election but failed each time to get the motion passed and will need to win the backing of two-thirds of MPs to get the latest election push through Parliament, RT reported.
The prime minister added that, if MPs agree to an election on December 12, Parliament would be dissolved on November 6. Opposition parties have so far refused to agree to an election until the government can remove the threat of a no-deal Brexit.
“The way to get Brexit done is to, I think, be reasonable with Parliament,” Johnson said, noting, “If they genuinely want more time to study this excellent deal, they can have it but they have to agree to a general election on December 12 – that’s the way forward.”
Johnson also stated that Parliament would have enough time to study the Brexit Bill before dissolving for an election, adding that it would be morally incredible for Labour to refuse an election at this point. The government has floundered in its efforts to get a Brexit deal through Parliament. Its latest bid was dealt a serious blow on Saturday when MPs voted to delay deciding on the newest version of the deal.
The Speaker of the House then refused to grant a “meaningful vote” on the bill on Monday, saying that allowing it to proceed would essentially amount to debating the same matter twice. The decision by MPs to delay their vote scuppered the chances of getting the necessary legislation through both Houses by the end-of-October deadline, forcing Number 10 to write to the EU asking for another delay, despite Johnson’s vocal opposition to making such a request.
In a letter to opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn on Thursday, the prime minister said it’s likely the EU will offer a new Brexit delay up to the end of January 2020, but that it could offer a shorter one, to November 15 or 30.
On the bright side for Johnson, he has managed to break his string of parliamentary defeats, winning the Queen’s Speech vote. The monarch’s speech, which is basically the government’s legislative program for the next parliamentary session, was passed on Thursday by the lawmakers, by a narrow margin of 16 votes.
On top of that, the new debate on whether to hold early parliamentary elections has been greenlighted to take place next Monday.
“Members will have an opportunity to debate and approve a motion relating to an early parliamentary election,” the leader of the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg told parliament.