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Supreme Court rules against Johnson's Parliament prorogation

Tuesday 24 September 2019

Dr Ben Williams, Lecturer in Politics and Political Theory at the University of Salford, comments as the Supreme Court overturns Boris Johnson’s proroguing of Parliament.

“The Supreme Court’s ruling is a dramatic development which marks yet a further setback for Boris Johnson’s Brexit strategy, and it could well be wide-ranging and unprecedented in its impact.

“On the back of a series of embarrassing parliamentary defeats, this unanimous judicial verdict has decisively answered the question as to whether Johnson was within his rights to prorogue Parliament in the way that he did. 

“By declaring that he was not, this appears to have further undermined his credibility and performance as Prime Minister, which adds to his image of recklessness and an unwillingness to play by the normal rules of the political game. Consequently, a growing number of critics from both his own side and opposition parties now calling for him to consider his position.

“Having waited so long to become Prime Minister, he seems likely to try and tough it out, although speculation continues as to whether this is all part of grand plan or if he and his team are making it up as they go along. Both he and his key advisor Dominic Cummings will now be carefully planning their next move, although whatever it is there is growing doubt that he will be able to meet his much-proclaimed Brexit deadline of October 31st. 

“This could well have negative implications for Johnson’s public support, yet one final glimmer of hope may be that this latest development further boosts Johnson’s popularity among Brexiteers, who will see him as a martyr for talking on the ‘establishment’. For this martyred image he could still be rewarded in votes when a general election almost certainly takes places in the near future, assuming he is still Conservative Leader.” 

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Sam Wood

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