Wednesday 4 September 2019 10:30 am

Boris Johnson's decision to prorogue parliament is legal, Scottish court rules

Boris Johnson’s move to prorogue parliament in the run up to the Halloween Brexit deadline is legal, a court has ruled.

A Scottish court today rejected a legal challenge to stop the shutdown of parliament for almost five weeks until 14 October.

Read more: Rebel, rebel: Boris Johnson faces day two of defiance

MPs have complained that it will leave them with less time to debate Johnson’s Brexit strategy ahead of the UK’s scheduled 31 October departure date from the EU.


Scottish National Party MP Joanna Cherry said she will look to appeal the decision.

Scottish Judge Raymond Doherty found against the 75 MPs who had challenged Johnson’s plan to prorogue parliament.

“In my view, the advice given in relation to the prorogation decision is a matter involving high policy and political judgment,” he said.

“This is political territory and decision-making which cannot be measured against legal standards and only by political judgements.”

On 28 August the Prime Minister said he would suspend parliament between the middle of September, to return for a Queen’s speech on 14 October.

Johnson yesterday lost a vote in the House of Commons as MPs tried to stop him taking the UK out of the European Union without a deal.

MPs voted 328 to 301 against the government, with 21 Conservative rebels facing expulsion from the party afterwards.


The vote prompted Boris Jonson to say he would push for a snap election.

Read more: British pound soars after Boris Johnson suffers Brexit blow

“I don’t want an election, but if MPs vote tomorrow to stop negotiations and compel another pointless delay to Brexit, potentially for years, then that would be the only way to resolve this,” Johnson told parliament after the vote.

“I can confirm that we are tonight tabling a motion under the Fixed Term Parliament Act.”

Johnson today faces a vote which is designed to force him to ask for an extension to Article 50 if he cannot get a deal by parliament by 19 October.

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