Brexit: suspending parliament should not be ruled out, says Dominic Raab

Tory leadership contender says dropping widely criticised idea would weaken UK negotiating position

The Tory leadership contender Dominic Raab has said the possibility of sidelining parliament to force through Brexit should not be ruled out, as to do so would weaken the UKs negotiating position in Brussels.

I think its wrong to rule out any tool to make sure that we leave by the end of October, Raab told BBC Radio 4s Today programme, as the Conservative party reels from its disastrous results in the European election, in which Eurosceptic voters flocked to the Brexit party.

The exam question in this contest is: who can be trusted to lead us out by the end of October and end this paralysing uncertainty, he said.

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Critics of the approach have warned that prorogation would involve the Queen in a constitutional crisis, because formally it is the monarch who ends a session of parliament.

Raab said it was unlikely to come to that because MPs powers to block a no-deal Brexit were limited. He said that if chosen as Tory leader he would return to Brussels with a best, final offer – including the removal of the Irish backstop but insist there could be no further delay, and that the UK would be prepared to leave without a deal.

I think anyone who is talking about delay or who is taking [World Trade Organization trade terms] off the table is having the perverse effect of weakening our negotiating position in Brussels. Thats the lesson of the last three years, he said.

Quick guide

Tory party leadership contest

What happens next in the Tory party leadership race?

As she announced on 24 May, Theresa May will step down formally as Conservative leader on Friday although she will remain in place as prime minister until her successor is chosen.

The rules for the contest to replace her have been tweaked by the backbench 1922 Committee, with the backing of the partys board, in order to prevent the contest dragging on for weeks.

Nominations will close at 5.30pm next Monday. Candidates will have to show that they have the support of eight of their colleagues: a proposer, a seconder and six other MPs.

MPs will hold a series of votes, in order to narrow down the crowded field, which currently stands at eleven leadership hopefuls.

How does the voting work?

MPs choose one candidate, in a secret ballot held in a committee room in the House of Commons. The votes are tallied and the results announced on the same day.

The 1922 Committee has decided that after the first round, any candidate who wins the support of less than 17 MPs, will be eliminated. And after the second round, the threshold will be set at 33 MPs.

Rounds of voting will then continue until just two candidates remain. The first round will be held on Thursday 13 June from 10am to noon. Subsequent rounds have been pencilled in for the 18th, 19th and 20th.

The two remaining candidates will then be put to the Conservative membership for a vote.

When will the results be announced?

Once MPs have whittled down the field to two, Conservative party HQ takes over the running of the next stage, which it says will be completed in the week beginning Monday 22 July.

Will there be hustings?

Yes: MPs have organised a series of events themselves to put the candidates through their paces, kicking off with an event convened by the One Nation group on Tuesday evening. Conservative party HQ will organise its own events; and the BBC has also announced several televised debates between the candidates.

Photograph: Neil Hall/EPA

Its a test of nerve here and if candidates cannot stand up their resolve to lead us out by the end of October in a leadership contest, what chance would they have under the heat of the negotiations in Brussels?

Raab said the Peterborough byelection, in which the Tories finished third, and the partys drubbing in the European election, showed it was devastating for the Conservatives if we dont keep our promises on Brexit.

He said: What we cant have is this paralysing uncertainty, bad for the economy, bad for trust in democracy, bad for the Conservatives as we are seeing of just going on and on with this prolonged torture of haggling with the EU when we havent got a deal in sight.

The Commons Speaker, John Bercow, said on Thursday that it was blindingly obvious the new Conservative prime minister would not be able to suspend parliament to push through a no-deal Brexit.

That is simply not going to happen. It is just so blindingly obvious that it almost doesnt need to be stated, but apparently, it does and therefore I have done, he told MPs.

Following Theresa Mays formal resignation as Tory leader on Friday, the starting gun has been fired in the race to succeed her. The nomination process will take place on Monday, with candidates requiring eight MPs to back them in order to enter the race, with the first round of voting on Thursday.

Original Article : HERE ; This post was curated & posted using : RealSpecific

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