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Image: Sky News

Boris Johnson: Parliament has tried to 'get Brexit done' and it hasn't delivered

“This political generation won’t be forgiven for failing to honour that [Brexit] promise,” he told Sky News’ Sam Coates.
Aug 30th 2019, 12:46 PM 19,770 51

UK PRIME MINISTER Boris Johnson has responded to criticism of his decision to suspend the British parliament by saying that parliament has tried to deliver Brexit for three years and hasn’t succeeded. 

Speaking in an interview with Sky News, in his first interview since the queen granted his request to prorogue parliament, Johnson said that political opponents were harming his chances of a getting good deal with the EU.

“Parliament triggered Article 50, and time and time again, they promised to deliver on the mandate of the people and get Brexit done, and I hope that they will.

“We’re coming up to the last period in which we leave and parliament will have a lot of time – they’ve spent three years debating Brexit without getting it over the line – they will have a lot of time for further consideration.”

He said what he wants to do now is “get on and try to get an agreement”.

I’m afraid that the more our friends and partners think that Brexit could be stopped and that the UK could be kept in [the EU] by [the British] parliament, the less likely they are to give us the deal that we need.

When asked what his message was to protesters, Johnson said:

“I think the worst thing for democracy now would be to cancel the referendum, which is what some people are calling for now. Everybody can see what the risk is now – if we frustrate that mandate, if we stop the UK from leaving on October 31, it will do lasting damage to people’s trust in politics. It will do lasting and catastrophic damage to political parties. 

This political generation won’t be forgiven for failing to honour that promise. We told the people we would get it done. 
The best way to succeed in that negotiation [with the EU] is for everybody to be united in the objective and for the UK negotiations to have the strongest possible hand and that’s what we’ll do over the next few weeks.

On Wednesday, Johnson asked the queen to allow the UK parliament to be suspended – known as proroguing parliament – in order to set a new legislative agenda.

But House Speaker John Bercow said that it was “blindingly obvious” that it was being done to stifle parliamentary debate on Brexit – Johnson has said this is “completely untrue”.

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Gráinne Ní Aodha

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