Boris Johnson launches leadership bid: We leave EU on October 31 deal or no deal | World Defense

Boris Johnson launches leadership bid: We leave EU on October 31 deal or no deal

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Boris Johnson launches leadership bid: We leave EU on October 31 deal or no deal
Reuters
June 03, 2019
7487

  • Prime Minister Theresa May is due to resign on Friday having failed to deliver Brexit on time
LONDON: Boris Johnson, the frontrunner to be Britain’s next prime minister, promised on Monday to lead the country out of the European Union on Oct. 31 with or without an exit deal, launching his leadership bid in a campaign video.

Prime Minister Theresa May is due to resign on Friday having failed to deliver Brexit on time, leaving behind her a divided nation and parliament with no consensus on the way ahead for the world’s fifth largest economy.

Johnson, a former foreign minister who resigned in protest at May’s handling of Brexit, is the bookmakers’ favorite to win a crowded contest and take over the running of the country at its most important strategic juncture in decades.

“If I get in, we’ll come out, deal or no deal, on October the 31st,” he was seen telling a member of the public in a campaign video released on Twitter.

The video, featuring clips of Johnson talking to voters and a monologue delivered straight to camera, is his first real salvo in the leadership battle which so far has 13 contenders and could take two months to determine the winner.

“Cut some taxes and you get more money in,” he is telling another member of the public, while also arguing for more investment in education, infrastructure and health care.

“Now is the time to unite our society, and unite our country. To build the infrastructure, to invest in education, to improve our environment, and to support our fantastic NHS (National Health Service),” he said.

“To lift everyone in our country, and of course, also to make sure that we support our wealth creators and the businesses that make that investment possible.”

 

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British PM Boris Johnson, EU hail new Brexit agreement
Oct. 17, 2019
By Clyde Hughes

British-PM-Boris-Johnson-EU-hail-new-Brexit-agreement - Copy.jpg

European Union chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier speaks to reporters Thursday in Brussels, Belgium, at the start of a negotiation summit. Photo by Olivier Hoslet/EPA-EFE

Oct. 17 (UPI) -- On the day European Union and British negotiators were set to begin a Brexit summit in Belgium, the two sides said Thursday they have reached a long-awaited agreement.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the EU announced a new withdrawal agreement, which still requires legislative approval on both sides.

The agreement precedes Thursday's summit and a Saturday deadline that forces Johnson to request a withdrawal extension. Britain is scheduled to leave the EU on Oct. 31.

"Where there is a will, there is a deal - we have one," European Union President Jean-Claude Juncker tweeted. "It's a fair and balanced agreement for the EU and [Britain] and it is a testament to our commitment to find solutions. I recommend that [the European Commission] endorses this deal."

The EU Summit Thursday could lend approval to the deal and mark a breakthrough for the referendum that was passed by British voters in 2016.

Johnson called on British lawmakers to approve the deal.

"We've got a great new deal that takes back control -- now Parliament should get Brexit done on Saturday so we can move on to other priorities," Johnson said.

Both sides said the new deal dismisses the Irish "backstop," a measure to maintain a "soft" trade border between Ireland and Northern Ireland. In recent weeks, Johnson had proposed instead customs checkpoints on both sides of the border.

The prospects of getting the proposed agreement approved, however, are uncertain. The Democratic Unionist Party said immediately Thursday it won't support the proposal in Parliament. Many Conservative Party members have previously indicated they won't support a deal without the DUP.

Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbyn blasted the proposed agreement and called for a second public referendum.

"From what we know, it seems the prime minister has negotiated an even worse deal than [former Prime Minister] Theresa May's, which was overwhelmingly rejected," he said. "These proposals risk triggering a race to the bottom on rights and protections: Putting food safety at risk, cutting environmental standards and workers' rights, and opening up our [health system] to a takeover by U.S. private corporations."
 

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British Parliament passes Brexit delay
OCT. 19, 2019
By Sommer Brokaw
updated 3 mins ago

British-Parliament-passes-Brexit-delay - Copy.jpg

Thousands attend the People's Vote march against Brexit in London on Saturday. Photo by Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA-EFE

Oct. 19 (UPI) -- The British Parliament on Saturday passed an amendment delaying a vote on Prime Minister Boris Johnson's European Union withdrawal deal and avoiding a no-deal Brexit at the end of the month.

Parliament members voted 322-306 in favor of the Letwin amendment, which forces Johnson to ask the European Union for an extension on the Oct. 31 Brexit deadline.

The vote came during a meeting in which Johnson sought a vote on his Brexit deal. The meeting, coined "super Saturday," was the first time Parliament has met on a weekend since the Falkland War between Britain and Argentina in 1982.

Johnson warned he may ignore the amendment because the best thing for Britain would be to leave the European Union with a deal Oct. 31.

"I will not negotiate a delay with the EU, and neither does the law compel me to do so," he said. "Further delay will be bad for this country.

"Alas, the opportunity to have a meaningful vote has effectively been passed up."

The meeting was held amid a march in opposition to Johnson's deal in London.

Johnson kicked off the meeting by presenting the Brexit deal he reached Thursday with the European Union.

Democratic Unionist Party member Sammy Wilson suggested the party's MPs would back the Oliver Letwin Amendment, which would withhold approval of Johnson's deal until Parliament passes legislation required to implement Johnson's plan.

MP Chris Grayling warned that passage of the Letwin amendment may delay the vote again.

If Johnson's deal had passed, the vote could have been the most significant step towards Brexit since British voters approved a referendum to leave the European Union three years ago.

His predecessor, Theresa May, repeatedly failed to pass a Brexit proposal.

May's deal featured a safety net clause to save Britain from a no-deal Brexit. Johnson's deal doesn't have that clause.

Johnson's deal also maintains some European Union rules in Northern Ireland, which critics fear could spark sectarian violence.

Saturday's debate came as tens of thousands marched outside in opposition at a People's Vote March, demanding a "final say" in the vote.

The People's Vote campaign organizers are asking supporters to sign a letter to Boris Johnson and other leaders asking them to allow "the chance to check whether we want to proceed with Brexit."
 

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British Parliament leader blocks 2nd Brexit vote as 'repetitive'
Oct. 21, 2019
By Nicholas Sakelaris
British-Parliament-leader-blocks-2nd-Brexit-vote-as-repetitive - Copy.jpg

House Speaker John Bercow said a vote Monday would've been repetitive. File Photo by Stephanie Lecocq/EPA-EFE


Oct. 21 (UPI) -- British Parliament was blocked from voting on Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Withdrawal Agreement Bill Monday, meaning Britain will almost certainly need another extension before it can leave the European Union.

Speaker of the House John Bercow said he would not allow a yes or no vote on the deal because Parliament already rejected the proposal over the weekend, and can't vote on the same item twice. Doing so, he said, would be "repetitive and disorderly."

Bercow declared it was "a necessary rule to ensure the sensible use of the house's time and proper respect for the decisions that it takes."

A spokesman for Johnson said the prime minister was disappointed in Bercow's decision mainly because it denies a chance for lawmakers to deliver on the will of the people.

Approving the agreement with a vote Monday would've allowed Britain to leave the bloc Oct. 31, on schedule. Johnson has made a request for an extension, as required by law.

A failure by Johnson to get his plan passed could result in a no confidence vote, which former Prime Minister Theresa May received earlier this year after she failed to get multiple proposals through Parliament.

Labor Party member Hilary Benn said he expected a vote Monday "to put this whole deal back to the British people."

EU leaders are pushing for an answer.

"We need a yes or no before Oct. 31," French Secretary of State for European Affairs Amelie de Montchalin said. "The worst of Brexit is not a no-deal, it is extended uncertainty. The fact that today we are unable to say to businesses, fishermen, farmers and family, 'Voila! This is what is going to happen.' This is what creates recession."
 

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