Boris Johnson to suspend parliament again next week ahead of Queen’s Speech

The move would allow for a Queen’s Speech to take place on 14 October

Lizzy Buchan
Political Correspondent
Wednesday 02 October 2019 19:21 BST
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Boris Johnson will seek to suspend parliament again next week ahead of a new Queen’s Speech, in a move that risks infuriating MPs.

Only days after the Supreme Court ordered MPs to return to work, the prime minister will ask the Queen to prorogue parliament on Tuesday for several days to allow him to prepare his new legislative programme.

The move would allow for a Queen’s Speech to take place on 14 October, ahead of the crucial EU summit on 17-18 October.

It comes after the UK’s highest court ruled the prime minister’s decision to prorogue parliament for five weeks was unlawful, forcing Mr Johnson to fly back early from a diplomatic mission to face angry MPs.

The Supreme Court justices ruled the long suspension as void because they found it prevented parliament from carrying out its duties.

Parliament was reopened on 25 September and ministers have been forced to shuttle back and forth from Manchester after opposition MPs refused to approve the traditional short recess for their annual conference.

Downing Street said the new suspension was “shortest time possible” to enable logistical preparations for the pomp of a state opening, where the Queen comes to the House of Lords to read the government’s legislative programme.

If a new Brexit deal is agreed, it would form the central point of this new agenda, No 10 said.

The prime minister said: “I want to deliver on the people’s priorities.

“Through a Queen’s Speech, the government will set out its plans for the NHS, schools, tackling crime, investing in infrastructure and building a strong economy.

“We will get Brexit done on 31 October and continue delivering on these vital issues.”

Mr Johnson is unlikely to gain support for his plans due to his lack of a Commons majority – but No 10 will undoubtedly be hoping the Queen’s Speech serves as a platform for a looming general election.

The prime minister’s official spokesman said the government was “looking at the precise implications” of the Supreme Court judgment when asked about a new Queen’s Speech.

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