National & International

Prorogation of Parliament: what does it mean?

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Prime minister Boris Johnson, has been granted by the Queen to suspend parliament for a five-week period right before Britain is due to leave the European Union. This will lead to less time for parliament and MPs to stop a no-deal Brexit.

The suspension would allow Boris Johnson to focus on his plans on bringing forward a new legislative programme on crime, hospitals and sufficient funding on education. By the time the MPs return from their “vacation” on 14th October they will have only 17 days to debate Brexit, which according to the prime minister is more than enough time.

John Bercow MP, speaker for the House of Commons, said it was obvious that the purpose of prorogation would be to stop parliament from debating Brexit. He also said Mr Johnson was aware that parliament had no desire for a suspension during the middle of a national crisis.

Proroguing parliament cannot be stopped because it is not voted on by MPs. Dominic Grieve, the Conservative MP, is working on a plan to organise a “humble address” that directs to the queen about the current situation. A “humble address” can be used to express its strength of feeling to the government to hand over documents.

A public petition against parliament’s suspension now gathered more than a million signatures and it is the fastest growing parliamentary petition since the signing of Article 50 to be revoked earlier this year.


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