AKA “Kick The Leave Act Down The Road 2019 Act”
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper duly voted as expected for the Second and Third Readings, as MPs had only four hours to debate all stages of the controversial Benn Bill. It states, of course, that unless a deal is reached with the EU or Parliament approves a no-deal Brexit by October 19th, the Government would be required to write to the EU seeking an extension to the Article 50 period until January 31st 2020.
Rosie Cooper merely tells us in her newsletter“Uncertainty remains over the next steps in the UK leaving the EU. As I write this newsletter Boris Johnson has failed to stop Parliament forcing a no-deal Brexit off the table. Whether there is a general election or not we will see in the coming days”.
The Prime Minister would immediately have to accept that extension if offered while, if the European Council agreed an extension to any other unspecified date, at any point in the dim and distant future, the Prime Minister would have to accept it within two days (unless the House of Commons rejected it) hence Johnson discussing it in terms of a “surrender”.
Tory backbencher Andrew Percy pretty much summed up the situation as many of us see it during the debate when he observed “I will not support any amendment that allows a further extension, because my constituents and I know what is going on here. Those colleagues are playing it long, playing for time and saying that they respect the result when they have no intention of doing so. They did not respect the result in March or April of this year, and they are not going to on 31st October. You can sure as damn tell it, they ain’t going to on 31st January either.”
In a never to be forgotten speech Corbyn set out one of his reasons for not wanting an election as “It is the anti-democratic instincts of this Government that cause us concern. Despite the expressed will of the House to support the Bill debated today, the Conservative peers, the Government’s colleagues in the Lords have tabled 92 amendments for debate. I really doubt that this is motivated by a desire to improve the legislation; not a bit of it. Instead, it is motivated by a desire to filibuster the Bill, an undemocratic cabal in Downing Street, aligned with an undemocratic and unelected House [of Lords!] to override the democratic will of this House expressed in the Bill to which we have just given a Third Reading”.
Truly amazing admissions of anti-democracy wherever you look! And, might you be asking, who in hell appoints the undemocratic and unelected Lords to the entirely unelected House?