SIR John Major last night claimed Boris Johnson will try to use the Privy Council to dodge Brexit extension laws.
The former Tory PM fears the Government is planning to pass an Order of Council to suspend the Benn Act until after October 31.
Sir John Major fears that the Government is planning to dodge having to ask for a Brexit extension[/caption]
Boris Johnson’s actions were branded ‘utterly disrespectful’ by former PM Sir John Major[/caption]
Such a move would be “political chicanery” that “no one should ever forgive or forget”, said Mr Major.
The ancient mechanism can be used by ministers without any involvement from Parliament or the Queen.
Mr Major’s warning came hours after ministers revealed they were looking at ways to get around the Benn Act.
Brexit Minister James Duddridge told MPs that the Government believes there are “deficiencies” with the law because it includes an amendment from Labour’s Stephen Kinnock which would bring back a version of Theresa May’s Brexit deal.
He said: “The bill is not perfect. The government believes it does have deficiencies and its effect is unclear.”
Speaking at a Centre for European Reform event at the Spanish Embassy, Sir John said: “My fear is that the Government will seek to bypass Statute Law, by passing an Order of Council to suspend the Act until after October 31.
“It is important to note that an Order of Council can be passed by Privy Councillors — that is Government Ministers — without involving the Queen.
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“I should warn the Prime Minister that if this route is taken it will be in flagrant defiance of Parliament and utterly disrespectful to the Supreme Court. It would be a piece of political chicanery that no one should ever forgive or forget.”
Sir John also delivered an astonishing warning about Mr Johnson’s populist and “divisive” election strategy — claiming it is “profoundly un-Conservative”.
He accused the PM of “whipping up dissent by using highly emotional and evocative language that can only provoke fear and anger and fuel grievances against Parliament and the law”.
Brexit Minister James Duddridge spoke of ‘deficiencies’ in the law due to the amendment which could bring back a version of Theresa May’s deal[/caption]
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