To judge by the hysterical reaction to Bunter Johnsons suspension of Parliament, you would think he had mounted an African type coup and held a pistol to Queenie’s head.
The Poison Dwarf from North of the border called him a tin-pot dictator. Commons squeaker Bercow interrupted his holidays to declare a constitutional outrage had taken place, while Tory backbench rebel Dominic Grieve used the same phrase. Corbyn(bless him) merely accused Mr Johnson of being reckless.
Personally I never thought he would do it but now that he has, I can’t help feeling a sneaking sense of admiration for his ‘constitutional outrageousness.’ After all, those complaining the loudest are the ones who have been intent of stopping Brexit from the start.
Is that not a constitutional outrage or does it depend on one’s point of view? As they plough through their bacon and eggs this morning, Remainer politicians are doubtless still shuddering, complaining and dabbing their fevered brows. They are joined by an outraged group of twenty-five querulous Anglican bishops, who have written a letter that suggests they regard No Deal as an unchristian outcome.
Concentrate on increasing the size of your dwindling congregations, Fellows and stay out of politics. Wearing a dog collar does not mean you are profoundly knowledgeable.
Amid all this hysterical cat-calling, I hate to point out that Parliament is being deprived of only five or six days of sittings before reconvening on October 14. It wasn’t due to sit in the second half of September and the first of October in any case as our worthy representatives need to get together and woffle nonsense at their party conferences.
Which would have happened in any case damnit!
So I find it a bit pathetic to represent yesterday’s announcement as an assault on the British constitution and the rule of law. In more ways than one, this Brexit business is driving the whole country nuts.
And why all the outrage over a few short days. In the first place, MPs have had three years to agree a plan and have not done so. They’ve debated and voted and argued for thousands of hours without being able to settle on a resolution which commands majority support. Will an additional five or six days change that?
I doubt it somehow.
When the Commons reassembles after their lengthy break next Tuesday, the outraged Squeaker and the likes of Grieve, Sturgeon and the lugubrious Hammond will doubtless redouble their efforts to force the Prime Minister to postpone, or reverse, Brexit.
Whether they will succeed is another matter because they cannot even agree among themselves, but they will have their chance next week and the beginning of the following week, and after October 14th.
And Jeremy Corbyn (who disgracefully attempted to drag poor Queenie into this mess by demanding a meeting with her) can also have a go and call a motion of No Confidence in the Government next week, or when the Commons returns. I have a feeling that he won’t though, because his divided rabble is floundering in the polls, and would be unlikely to win anything in the election that would follow such a motion being passed.
It seems strange but symptomatic of something vaguely hypocritical that Remainers howling about the Prime Minister’s unconstitutional behaviour are much the same people who have been prepared to bend, twist and otherwise ignore constitutional precedent by seizing power from the Government so that they can pack Johnson off to Brussels to beg an extension.
And you know this suspending of Parliament for however long must surely make a deal more likely. Unless Remainer MPs succeed in their power-grab when the Commons briefly returns next week, the Government will have a clear run of just over four weeks during which it cannot be undermined by parliamentary shenanigans or nasty interventions from Squeaker Bercow. EU leaders and bureaucrats will no longer be able to pin their hopes on the idea that MPs are going to rescue them from the need to negotiate with the government over the Irish backstop. Over the past week both Merkel and Macron have wavered in their view that the sacrosanct Withdrawal Agreement cannot be revisited so there is definite cause for a modicum of optimism.
If Remainer MPs and their incessant and often destructive plotting are absent from the battlefield during the next few weeks, Mr Johnson will be able to enter unfettered talks with Brussels which must surely help.
Who knows, but when the Queen’s Speech is read out on October 14 to signal the beginning of a new session and the unveiling of the Government’s legislative programme, there could be the outline of an agreement between the Government and the EU. If the price of agreement is the loss of five or six days of Commons’ squabbling, I don’t think many people will be too upset or listen to the hysterical claptrap about our constitution being turned upside-down.
Nor will they be taken in by Remainer caterwauling about a supposed onslaught on democracy. Whatever small sliver of democratic accountability is being momentarily sacrificed pales into insignificance compared with the efforts of some Remainer MPs to undo the result of the referendum.
The truth is that Bunter Johnson’s proposal is actually very modest and well-judged. I believe it brings us closer to a satisfactory agreement with Brussels, and therefore makes No Deal less probable.
But he is taking on almost the entire British Establishment, bishops included in a courageous way and that scares me just a little.