BORIS JOHNSON could face a constitutional crisis after the Supreme Court was urged to demand MPs are recalled next week if they rule he misled the Queen.
In an extraordinary demand yesterday, lawyers for ‘Remain’ campaigners demanded Parliament is reopened “as soon as possible” if the highest court in land declares prorogation was illegal.
The Supreme Court has been urged by Remain lawyers to demand that MPs are recalled next week if it rules that Boris Johnson misled the Queen[/caption]
Lord Pannick QC added that Speaker John Bercow – and Lord’s Speaker Lord Fowler – could even bypass No.10 and recall Parliament themselves.
Government lawyers warned the court they were entering “forbidden territory” by seeking to pass a judgement on a political matter.
It came in a dramatic final days’ hearing where Supreme Court President Lady Hale revealed their historic judgement on the PM would be made “early next week”. Experts believe it will come Monday.
The Supreme Court is being asked to determine whether Boris Johnson acted unlawfully when suspending Parliament for five weeks until October 14.
Critics claim it was done to silence MPs over Brexit.
Any nuclear ruling demanding MPs come back could force the PM to cut short his high profile trip to the UN in New York.
And it would ruin Labour’s party conference, which runs from Saturday to Wednesday.
Lawyers acting for the Government yesterday pleaded with the Court to recognise that demanding MPs are recalled early would cause chaos given the need for a Queen’s Speech to formally reopen Parliament.
They said: “Extensive arrangements would have to be made, including as to security, to enable this to occur.”
And the PM last night refused to rule out proroguing again. Challenged on a trip to Salisbury, he said: “I will wait and see what transpires.”
Lord Keen QC – for the Government – had earlier once more insisted the case was not a matter for the Supreme Court to rule on.
He said ‘prorogation’ was a political matter ruled by convention.
And he told the 11 judges they were being dragged into a “minefield” by being asked to make unprecedented rulings on what they believed the PM’s motives to be when he asked the Queen to suspend Parliament.
Lord Pannick QC added that Speaker John Bercow – and Lord’s Speaker Lord Fowler – could even bypass No.10 and recall Parliament themselves[/caption]
Lord Keen QC has insisted the case was not a matter for the Supreme Court to rule on[/caption]
Never before has the court been asked to rule on such an emotionally charged political matter historically governed by ‘convention’.
Lord Keen said: “How is the court to opine on the issue of proper or improper purpose, of legitimate or illegitimate political purpose?” he said.
“How are these concepts to be defined and applied in this context?”
He added: “The applicants are inviting the courts into forbidden territory and an ill-defined minefield that the courts are not – with the greatest of respect – properly re-quipped to deal with it.”
‘NONE OF THIS IS EASY’
Summing up after three days’ of exhaustive testimony, Supreme Court President Lady Hale insisted: “None of this is easy”.
But she insisted the arguments for and against Brexit would not come into the judges’ thinking.
“We are solely concerned with the lawfulness of the Prime Minister’s decision to advise Her Majesty to prorogue Parliament on the dates in question,” she said.
“As we have heard, it is not a simple question and we will now carefully consider all the arguments that have been presented to us.”
Experts last night claimed they believed the Court will almost certainly criticise Mr Johnson. But they were split over whether they may go as far as ruling his act unlawful.
One MP said: “I still think Boris will get his way and be left in charge of what happens next. But he’ll get a pretty big slap on the wrist.”
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Ex-Tory party leader Iain Duncan Smith insisted: “I think it would be completely wrong for them to try and rule in this area. Their job is to rule on the law.
“If Parliament wanted to limit prorogation it could have passed a law at any point in the 100 years to try and do so.”
He added: “This is another example of the Establishment trying to stop Brexit.”
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