Efforts to broker a exit from the European Union is proving VERY….VERY Difficult…..
With his Brexit deal “paused” and his “do-or-die” promise to leave the European Union by the end of October dashed, Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday said that he would ask the fractious Parliament to agree to a Dec. 12 general election.
In a letter to opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, Johnson said he would give the divided Parliament one last chance to scrutinize his withdrawal agreement legislation and “get Brexit done” by Nov. 6.
In his missive to Corybyn, Johnson warned that, regardless, he would put forth under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act on Monday, a motion seeking an early general election.
Under that act, two-thirds of Parliament must agree to go to elections. It is uncertain that Johnson could win the two-thirds he needs.
Johnson wrote, “An election on 12 December will allow a new parliament and government to be in place by Christmas. If I win a majority in this election, we will then ratify the great new deal that I have negotiated, get Brexit done in January and the country will move on.”
Speaking with BBC, Johnson said that if lawmakers “genuinely want more time to study this excellent deal, they can have it — but they have to agree to a general election on December the 12th.”
It was a threat, yes, but also a serious call to let voters settle the matter.
Johnson has been frustrated in his effort to extract Britain from the European Union.
Lawmakers voted to support moving his Brexit legislation forward in the approval process, but then rejected his fast-tracked, three-day timetable, saying they need more time to scrutinize it.
And even before that, because Johnson missed a mid-October deadline to get his deal approved, he was forced to send a letter to the European Union leaders requesting an extension until the end of January 2020.
The Europeans are still mulling the extension. It is possible they could say they are sick and tired of Brexit and offer no extension. Or they could offer a short extension of several weeks. Or they could do what Johnson asked them to do — grudgingly — and extend the next Brexit deadline until Jan. 31…..