Boris Johnson emerges from hiding to promise timely Brexit

Lester Mason
June 13, 2019

Johnson, favourite for the top job almost three years since he led the referendum campaign to leave the European Union, praised the strength of the British economy and promised to tackle widespread disillusionment over the protracted Brexit process.

"Any Tory leadership candidate should know that Parliament will continue to fight against no deal".

They might also book more time for Brexit debates, meaning that a future prime minister will not be able to ignore the will of MPs or pursue a policy that does not have the support of the House.

Labour used an opposition day to table a controversial business motion that sought to "put power back in the hands of Parliament" and pave the way for another vote in June that, if passed, would block a no deal.

Johnson said a new government with "new optimism" and "total conviction about the way forward" could find a way to find a compromise, although he gave no detail.

Meanwhile, Labour's cross-party motion aimed at stopping a no-deal Brexit being pushed through by a future prime minister was rejected by MPs.

At his launch event, Mr Johnson had to fend off a series of reporters' questions about his past character and record in office.

Nearly three years since voting to leave the EU, Britain is no clearer on how, when or even whether Brexit will happen. "I think it will be very hard for friends in Parliament to obstruct the will of the people and simply to block Brexit", Mr Johnson said.

Referring to his record as mayor of London, he said: "I do what I promise to do as a politician".

British MPs have voted against a Labour Party bid to seize control of the parliamentary agenda from the government in order to try and block a no-deal Brexit.

"No-deal can not be imposed on the country or on Parliament and we will find mechanisms to make sure that doesn't happen", a senior party source said.

Government sources said the motion would set an "uncomfortable and troubling precedent" and were clear that Tory MPs would be whipped to vote against it.

Tory MPs who have said they will back the plan include Antoinette Sandbach, Dominic Grieve, Sam Gyimah, Jonathan Djanogly and the ex-Conservative Nick Boles, who has flown back to the United Kingdom specifically to vote on the motion.

Commenting on the motion, Rory Stewart said: "For the avoidance of any doubt - I have read the Labour motion proposed for tomorrow and I will NOT be voting for it".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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