The Shifting Sand of Brexit: movements of the past 7 days

The Shifting Sand of Brexit: movements of the past 7 days

The Supreme Courts finds prorogation of Parliament ‘unlawful’ – and there was rejoicing.

Brexit: Where are we this week

  • 7 days is a very, very long time in the world of Brexit. At the close of last week, the first of 3 sitting days had begun at the Supreme Court around the legality of the prorogation of Parliament. However, the day the market and the country was waiting for was Tuesday and the release of the court’s judgment. 

“Prime minister’s advice to Her Majesty was unlawful, void and of no effect.”

It could not be clearer and as the Supreme Court is the highest court in the land there are no grounds for further appeal. It means that the suspension of Parliament over the past two weeks never actually occurred.

This is the key detail to understand, Parliament isn’t been ‘recalled’ it never left. Therefore, there is no Queen’s speech, no state opening and no new legislative agenda to be announced – the core reason Johnson went down this route. With no legislative agenda reset those bills that where on the floor of the parliament before prorogation can are able to be debated further. Several of these are key Brexit issues.

  • Vote of no confidence – Johnson has (and will continue to) faced calls to resign over the whole affair. It shows how unprecedented Brexit is when a sitting PM can basically brush these calls off after effectively causing the monarchy to break the law. He has called the monarch to ‘assure’ her of his position and that there is no need for him to step aside.

Further to this point is Jeremy Corbyn’s position. He has stated the PM should ‘consider his position’, Interesting choice of words as one would think an opposition leader with a finding like the one just handed down by the Supreme Court would be gunning for the PM.

Why he isn’t is two-fold. Should the PM resist to step aside (as he is) Corbyn should probably be moving a no-confidence motion against the PM on the floor of parliament. This brings in the risk of an election before a Brexit extension is granted and thus a no-deal Brexit becomes a near-certainly.

Second, is his own position in the electorate. According to the last YouGov polling, Corbyn is falling further and further behind Johnson as preferred PM. The weekend’s annual Labour conference laid bare the huge dives inside the party between the far left and the more moderate sections of the party. All in all its probable he would lose the election.

  • Another week and another chance to hear from the vivacious John Bercow, and once again he hasn’t held back stating that he welcomed the judgment from the Supreme Court in its: “unanimous… unambiguous…[and] unqualified [Judgement].”

‘…the prorogation of parliament was unlawful, unlawful because it prevented or frustrated parliament in the discharge in its core duties and it did so at a crucial time for our country.

The citizens of the UK are entitled to expect that parliament does discharge its core functions, that it is in a position to scrutinize the executive, to hold ministers to account and to legislate if it chooses.

In the light of that explicit judgment, I have instructed the house authorities to prepare, not for the recall – the prorogation was unlawful and is void – to prepare for the resumption of the business of the House of Commons

…House of Commons sits tomorrow (Wednesday 25th) and that it does so at 11.30 am.’

  • The fallout from the Supreme Court is also spreading to other parts of the government with the attorney general and senior aides to the PM in the under the most pressure to resign.

The question remains: who advised the Prime Minister that prorogation of parliament would be lawful? The AG is the PM’s legal adviser, his aides are designed to provide all background support – who is to blame? Even hard Brexiteers are calling for head. Remember this is a government that has sacked 21 MP for crossing the floor and seen 2 high ranking ministers resign, one the PM’s brother the other the government whip.

With three weeks to the EU summit beginning October 17 and Parliament in this constant state of flux. All permutations are still on the table.

All this news has been seen by the markets move as follows over the past 7 days.


FTSE 100


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