Former British PM warns of Brexit crisis for Queen

Brenda Watkins
July 10, 2019

"I think the idea of proroguing parliament is utterly and totally unacceptable from any British parliamentarian or democrat".

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt accused the US President of being "disrespectful and wrong", but Mr Johnson said during a televised debate for the two candidates on Tuesday night (July 9) that Mr Trump had been "dragged into a British political debate".

Pointing out that "loyalty is a two-way street", Sir John said: "I do not think that is good for the morale of the civil service and I do not think anybody who does that will endear themselves in obtaining the loyalty of the civil service in future".

But he refused to say whether he would keep Sir Kim in post, and instead he told the ITV debate: "It is vital that our civil service is not politicised by ministers leaking what they say. So my answer is no".

Speaking on Radio 4 this morning, Sir John told presenter, Mishal Husain, he would seek an "immediate judicial review" if Boris Johnson forges ahead with plans to side-step Parliament, known as prorogue, to force through a no-deal.

"If her first minister asks for that permission, it is nearly inconceivable that the Queen will do anything other than granted it".

The monarch would be "in the midst of a constitutional controversy that no serious politician should put the Queen in the middle of", Sir John said. Major concluded, "If that were to happen there would be a queue of people who would seek judicial review". The Queen's decision can not be challenged in law.

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Former ambassador to France Lord Ricketts echoed that view and added "I wish Boris Johnson could have brought himself to say the same".

Host Emily Maitlis then told challenged him over Mr Johnson's personalised comments about the President, and said: "Boris Johnson, as you well know, called Donald Trump "stupefyingly ignorant, quite stupefyingly ignorant" and "unfit to hold the office of President" when he was Mayor".

The UK was meant to leave the European Union on March 29, but the date was extended until October 31 after Prime Minister Theresa May's withdrawal agreement was defeated three times in parliament.

"I'm not going to take anything off the table, any more than I'm going to take no-deal off the table", Johnson said.

The former attorney-general's amendment would require ministers to return to parliament fortnightly from October to December to report on the situation in Northern Ireland, where the country's government collapsed in January 2017 over power-sharing disagreements between the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and Sinn Féin.

On Tuesday, lawmakers narrowly approved a measure that could make it harder for the next prime minister to suspend parliament.

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