Alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson said he wanted a General Election. Today, reassured by the agreement of all other EU member states that they had agreed the UK Government’s request for an extension of the Article 50 process and that there would not be a No Deal Brexit, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn granted his wish. Bozo, sadly, seemed not to understand that he had been given what he wanted.
He therefore carried on with his prepared script: Labour was trying to spin it out until the twelfth of never! But slowly, the penny dropped. So the Tories switched tack: they would not allow amendment of their General Election bill. Labour back-bencher Stella Creasy wasn’t buying that. Her amendment, meaning that the bill could be further amended, passed by 312 votes to 295. And then came Stephen Doughty.
Bozo was on a losing roll: he had already pleaded with the EU to rule out a further extension to the Article 50 process, but they cannot do so. And on came Paul Sweeney, who represents Glasgow North East for Labour: “Proud to be co-sponsoring this crucial amendment today that will seek to extend the franchise to 16 and 17 year olds in the next General Election”. A simple amendment which could secure a majority.
And remember, the bill brought before the Commons today seeks a simple majority - not the usual two-thirds of MPs specified by the Fixed Term Parliament Act - to trigger that General Election. So amendments tacked on to it and voted through by a simple majority will be enacted along with the election part. And there was worse to come.
The SNP’s Westminster leader, the formidable Ian Blackford “refuses to back Boris Johnson election timetable & says SNP want 16 & 17 year olds + EU Citizens to get the right to vote in snap General Election”. ITV political editor Robert Peston was suddenly concerned. "Corbyn confirms that he wants 3.4m EU nationals living in the UK to be able to vote in this election. Johnson won't accept this change to UK suffrage today. Will it mean that, after all, there won't be a general election in December?”
There had to be another threat! And Peston was there to spell it out. “Government is now threatening to pull the general-election bill if Labour insists on amendment to enfranchise 3.4m EU citizens. It all gets crazier”. Was this right? Lewis Goodall of Sky News confirmed that it was: “Government spokesman confirms that if amendment for extension of franchise to 16/17 year olds and EU citizens passes, the government will pull the bill”.
Maybe those amendments would not be selected. But they are highly relevant to the ground on which the next General Election would be fought. At Business Insider, Adam Bienkov has mused “We’re set for a general election in December. Here’s why it could go badly wrong for Boris Johnson”. But at least he talks in terms of the poll going ahead.
It might yet not do, and once more, this would rebound on Bozo, who said he wanted the contest. As Sunny Hundal put it, “This Labour plan to force Tories to pull their election plans after triple-daring Labour to go for it is genius”. Maybe not genius, but then, it shows that Bozo and his chief polecat Dominic Cummings aren’t as clever as they think.
Bozo has screwed up even before his campaign launches. Just rejoice at that news.
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