Our elected representatives in the House of Commons have voted this afternoon to prevent an incoming Prime Minister from proroguing parliament in the pursuit of a no-deal Brexit.
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You have all probably heard the news by now, that our MPs have voted by 315 votes to 274 to use a law from way back in 1797 to try and block someone like Boris Johnson from using prorogation to let the clock run down to a no deal Brexit on the 31st of October.
This is as a result of an amendment by MPs to the House of Lords amendment I talked about in a video yesterday.
The House of Lords amendment, which passed yesterday, tells the government to meet and debate aspects of Northern Ireland power sharing over the next few months.
But although it makes it a little more difficult, prorogation or the shutting down of parliament, could probably still take place.
So 24 cross party MPs led by Remainer Labour MP Hilary Benn, managed to table and get voted through an amendment that aims to force the government to recall parliament to hold those meetings, if it had already been prorogued.
So if Boris Johnson as the new Prime Minister and member of the Privy Council, advises the Queen to prorogue parliament and she does so, this new provision in a Northern Ireland Bill on power sharing would force the recall of parliament to hold the power sharing announcements and debates for five working days.
And the Remainers are obviously hoping they'll have some sort of working plan to reverse Brexit by then.
The Hilary Benn amendment uses the Meeting of Parliament Act 1797 chapter 127, which allows for the monarch, on the advice of the Privy Council, to recall parliament by Royal Proclamation, after it has been already been prorogued by the monarch on the advice of the Privy Council.
When, importantly, nothing has actually changed.
I'll put it this way, if the Queen prorogues parliament for two full weeks, in the certain knowledge that an Act she has previously signed means that prorogation would only last four days, then where do we stand?
If this amendment to the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill gets through to Royal Assent, then the act will be on the statute books. And it will in effect be an instruction to Her Majesty to recall parliament to hold power sharing debates, if parliament has already been prorogued by her.
Because, the wording of the amendment is quite clear. It says that if parliament has been prorogued and can't hold meetings on power sharing because it has been prorogued then:
"...a proclamation under the Meeting of Parliament Act 1797 (c. 127) shall require Parliament to meet on a specified day within the period within which compliance with subsection (2B) is required ......"
Now, under the 1797 Act, any such proclamation is a Royal Proclamation, i.e. one made by the Queen herself.
So, is parliament bossing the Queen about? Well it's at the very least politicising her position.
And I will also point out that the 1797 Act says that the Royal Proclamation to recall parliament is to be made "by and with the advice of the Privy Council".
What would be the outcome, if the privy Council advised the Queen to not recall parliament under this amendment because things had changed substantially since the Northern Ireland act was passed?
After all, this amendment does not instruct the Privy Council on how to advise the Queen, does it? Because it's telling the Queen what to do.
And the Queen will act on the advice of the Privy Council. She is not justiciable under the law.
But the meetings of the Privy Council are held in secret, so who would ever know who advised what to who and when?
And then there's the matter of did those proposing this amendment get the Queen's 'consent' to interfere in her personal prerogative to prorogue parliament - as required by the law?
I cannot believe how far these Remoaners are willing to go in trashing the UK constitution in order to hand over the whole country to a foreign power.