Johnson's Suspension Of Parliament Was 'Unlawful,' U.K. Court Rules
Support for NPR comes from James Madison University named for the man known as the father of the US constitution presenting the next Madison Vision Series Lecture on November fourth learn more at J. Dot Mu Slash Civic British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has lost big votes again and again in parliament and now he has suffered a huge defeat in court the UK Supreme Court has ruled against the prime minister. Let's remember Johnson suspended parliament for five weeks in what was seen seen as an effort to limit debate on Brexit. Will that is the act that the court has found to be illegal and let's bring. NPR's Frank Langfitt who is in the English seaside aside city of Brighton this morning frank. Hey Good Morning David. What exactly is the court saying here well if you remember. David Johnson argued that he needed this long extension so we could work on his legislative agenda but lady Brenda Hall. She was speaking for the eleven justices this morning and she said the suspension effectively prevented legislators from doing their job. This is the way that she put it. It had the effect of frustrating or preventing the ability of parliament want to carry out its constitutional functions without reasonable justification. Okay frank a big setback for the prime minister. I mean after a series as of setbacks in parliament now defeated in the courts date has not WanNa vote yet. So how is he is. He sounding still upbeat. Well it's interesting he is. He's going along with this. I don't think he has any choice. This was such a resounding verdict from the Supreme Court but he also says he's going to continue with this policy which the plan is we've been talking about is for Britain to leave the European Union on October thirty first one way or the other Johnson of course is in New York for the UN General Assembly meeting and a and here's what he had to say from New York. Obviously this is a but we will respect. We respect the judicial process. I have to say I strongly disagree with what the justices found I didn't think it's writes but we will go ahead and correspondent post-partum comeback. I think is a good case for getting with the Queen's speech anyway. We'll do that and David when he says the Queen's speech what he's talking talking about is he his legislative agenda which he is planned he's supposed to give on October fourteenth so he does plan to go through with that but House Speaker John Berko he he says that parliament will tomorrow and we'll see how they spend that time certainly we're gonNA probably hear a lot more criticism and scrutiny of Johnson's policies in in the days and weeks ahead and practically I mean what what does this mean for among other things specs it in this October thirty deadline politically this. This is yet another setback for Boris Johnson but I don't think you're going to see him back down at all. He's already said to his party. I'm going to do this do or die and he has. I don't think he has a lot of choice there. we are expecting a general election coming up in November or December and certainly Johnson knows that if he goes back on his word he could lose a lot of voters in his greatest fear. Most people who who followed his career his greatest fear would be actually not being able to stay as prime minister and and serving not a very long time well and that brings up the opposition the opposition leader Pro Labor Party and you're actually covering their convention right in in Britain I mean would they have had their own problems. As as this brexit process of been going they have had their own problems. David one thing is they've not been able to come up with a policy that is clear. They're kind of straddling the fence on this but I gotta say today this morning for Labor. This was a a big victory. They were euphoric very excited. Jeremy Corbyn the Labor leary came out on stage. He said this verdict showed that had contempt for democracy heat abused power and this. This is how corporate put it. I invite Boris Johnson in the historic words to consider his position. The become the shortest serving prime ministers have obeyed okay frank. Let's summarize British politics in turmoil and we have no idea what it happens in Brexit is that said about where we still are feels like. It's been that for more than eight years. David N._p._R.'s Frank Langfitt reporting this morning. Thanks so much have you David.