Queen Elizabeth II approves of Boris Johnson’s shutting-down-Parliament scheme

Boris Johnson becomes PM

I’m not sure what the Queen could have done or should have done with Boris Johnson’s terrible scheme. As we discussed earlier, Boris Johnson wanted the Queen to shut down Parliament so he can ram through a “no deal Brexit” in October. The idea behind it – from what I understand – is that Johnson wants to limit/stifle debate among MPs. It’s his version of “my way or the highway.” Which is pretty undemocratic. There was some hope that the Queen would find some way to shut down Boris Johnson’s scheme. She did not.

The Queen has formally approved Boris Johnson’s request to suspend parliament from the second week of September until October 14.

The move drastically shortens the time available for MPs to pass legislation to prevent a no-deal Brexit, and means an attempt to remove the prime minister through a vote of no-confidence over the next fortnight much more likely.

Former chancellor Philip Hammond joined John Bercow, the Commons speaker, in branding Mr Johnson’s plan a “constitutional outrage” which would prevent parliament from holding the government to account.

[From The Independent]

Back in 2016, most people assumed – by reading obscure royal tea leaves – that the Queen was pro-Brexit. I remember reading and covering a story about how the Queen’s priority was always the British commonwealth, not the EU. As in, the Queen’s priority will always be the countries belonging to the British commonwealth, and those are the alliances which need strengthening, as opposed to working more closely with one’s European neighbors. Could Boris Johnson’s Brexit plan actually be what the Queen has wanted this whole time? And is she helping him? It certainly appears so.

I imagine she fit in this Privy Council meeting in between shooting parties and tea with the corgis. Lordy.

Boris Johnson meets JD Wetherspoon chairman Tim Martin at Wetherspoons Metropolitan Bar in London

Queen's Christmas broadcast

Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red and Backgrid.

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178 Responses to “Queen Elizabeth II approves of Boris Johnson’s shutting-down-Parliament scheme”

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  1. Maria says:

    Hi my name is Queenie and my son is a rapist, yes I would like to give permission to curtail your democratic rights, all right off to shoot some grouse!

    • Léna says:

      That comment. Perfect

    • (TheOG)@Jan90067 says:

      Gotta wonder if she has the heli fired up and waiting to take herself and her “favorite” pedo off to a private island somewhere.

      • StarGreek says:

        She has. It was part of her plan for post-nodealBrexit in case of riots. Sort of like POTUS boarding Air Force One in case of attack to the White House.

    • ByTheSea says:

      Yeah, I’m not sure why everyone stans for the queen here. She was wearing a sh*t-eating grin with Dump, too. Birds of a feather. (Also not sure why she still has so much power.)

      • simonasays says:

        It was quite sad, how people were desperately trying to speculate how her outfits/brooches/enormous happy smiles to him were somehow trolling him.

        Instead of seeing who she really is.

        She’s been showing it for decades.

      • Anna says:

        And Donald T. wishes he had the same powers as the queen. If your parliament disagrees with your president / prime minister / chancellor then just force them to take a break. SIC(K)!!!!
        You don’t like parliament’s latest suggestion for new laws? Just switch off parliament! :-D
        Personally I find this horrible. You can’t switch off a democracy just because your elected representatives disagree with the current government (leader).

        Though honestly British Parliament didn’t seem to be able to deliver a well-ordered Brexit. But that ain’t no reason to neuter parliament. An indecisive parliament to the point of being an incapable parliament is a good reason for new elections. No neutering democracy.

    • lara (the other) says:

      Anybody here who knows enough about British constitutional law to say,if she could have denied Jonsons request?

      • Frances Houseman says:

        She really has no power – if she’d said no to Johnson it would have created another crisis. I think the Trump state visit in July really illustrated the powerlessness of the British Royal Family. But hey! The Dutchess of Sussex did something so let’s complain about that.

      • Maria says:

        She could have steered him in a different direction at least. But she said yes because his government pays her bills. She looks out for herself.

      • notasugarhere says:

        She can made comments and suggestions, but she cannot “steer” him anywhere. She is a figurehead. The elected government tells her what to do regarding government, and she does it.

      • Maria says:

        The Queen with her army of courtiers who have performed tons of machinations in private for personal/political gain couldn’t have steered him from doing this, considering he doesn’t have the support? I doubt that. And she has royal prerogative to do so. It doesn’t even mean she needed to tell him “no” outright. There were a number of ways this could have gone behind closed doors. Let’s call it what it is. She said yes to keep government funding and protect her own position.

      • StarGreek says:

        She has an option called royal prerogative, so yes ‘constitutionally’ she could have denied the request.

        However this option has never been used and it was very unlikely that a 92-year-old would have gone against the PM’s judgement and advice. Johnson knew this.

        Now it is a legal battle uphill.

        Demonstrations will start from 4 pm UK time in all the major cities.

      • Claire says:

        I wonder if Charles would have had what it took to stand up to Johnson.

      • notasugarhere says:

        She is a figurehead. She is there to do what the duly-elected government tells her to do.

      • Redgrl says:

        As a figurehead, the “approval” is really symbolic. Theoretically she could have refused, but given that the elected government is the real voice of the public, she’s not going to do that. Former PM Harper prorogued Parliament in Canada and everyone jumped up and down saying the Governor General should do something, which of course wasn’t going to happen either. If I remember correctly the GG waited a few days to see if the opposition could form a government though.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Redgrl

        “Theoretically she could have refused, but given that the elected government is the real voice of the public, she’s not going to do that.”

        Yes, in a ‘normal’ situation you’d be right. But we have had a clusterf@ck of government since last general election and if there is no constitutional figure or device from stopping the baddies to go all awry is an issue. There is no Iron Man or Captain America to save the day here.

        The fact many Brits are all up in arms about is actually that the Queen has power, albeit limited, but chose not to use it because… does she care if Johnson and Brexit screw the UK? Nope, it’ll be normal business day for the royals on November 1st.

      • Ana says:

        “The elected government tells her what to do regarding government, and she does it.” What is the point of investing literally millions of £ on a family that does nothing to help the British people? And don’t give me the “Oh but they do charity…” excuse because alms never got anyone out of poverty.

      • thea says:

        @ann exactly? if she’s so powerless, then wtf is her point? why do we spend millions on her and her family? just for bread and circuses?

      • Anna says:

        Yep, the Queen does have certain powers. She can refuse to do certain things. And yes, that is the unwritten British Constitution. A constitution is actually just a very wide-reaching contract. And you can ALWAYS refuse to sign a contract. That is your RIGHT. And the queen has that right, too.

        the queen:
        She can sign laws. She can refuse to sign laws. (No idea what happens if she refuses but she can refuse! she does get these red briefcases with government papers regularly.)

        She can dissolve parliament. She can refuse to dissolve parliament.

        She can appoint and dismiss ministers including the prime minister.

        She can declare war. She can declare peace.

        She can accept that a newly elected politician forms a government on her behalf. And she can refuse that, too.

        It is always told the Queen were completely powerless and just a figurehead. Not true.
        Just google: Queen head of state powers

      • Irishgal says:

        Lars no she couldn’t deny it. It’s just a formality she signs it off

    • StarGreek says:

      From the Guardian feed now:

      “This is the argument Number 10 will be using with potential rebels: don’t pull the rug out from under us, just as we’d got the message across to the EU27 that we’re prepared to do no deal if we have to.”

      Johnson and Queenie are gearing up to get a deal from 27 other countries and force Parliamentary rebels to shut up basically blackmailing them all with chaos in UK.

      This situation is appalling. Wales parliament is being recalled next week to discuss the crisis – For American commenters: Wales and Scotland’s Parliaments are the 2 only functioning parliaments in UK now, as Northern Irish assembly has not been sitting for 2 years.

      • notasugarhere says:

        The EU has already said, today, they will not renegotiate. They are not 27 separate countries, they are one united front. The deal on the table is the only deal. They will not vote for another extension. The only wiggle room is they might vote to allow a delay if-and-only-if a new Leave/Remain referendum is what’s on the table.

    • Ronaldinhio says:

      She has no actual power to do anything other than agree to his request as he is head of the elected Parliament.
      Her role is as a figurehead only.
      She would have caused a constitutional crisis by not agreeing to his request and why? She is not elected and she speaks for no-one except herself.
      No one knows her political views on anything it is pure speculation. Ditto regarding her views on political leaders. She is often used by UK politicos to curry favours with others – Trump is a good case in point.

  2. S says:

    She is a literal monarchist. How is her lack of commitment to a democratic process a shock to anyone?

    • Maria says:

      Realistically to preserve the monarchy she’s caught between a rock and a hard place here. She can’t really get involved in politics to preserve the monarchy, so she acquiesces to the PM. But the No-Deal Brexit that the PM is pushing with this closure of Parliament may well also lead to the monarchy’s demise.
      I don’t think giving her consent was very far-seeing.

      • S says:

        Agree. As a figurehead, the Queen could have, at most, thrown up a mild roadblock, even if she really, really wanted to. But the best guess is that she doesn’t. She’s a very old, extremely out of touch and incredibly wealthy and privileged white woman. Her life, however long of it is left, is in zero danger of changing due to Brexit. And she knows the monarchy is safe at least for her remaining lifetime, no matter what she does or says at this point. Will a throne still exist for her great-grandchildren to assume? I’m not British, but I find it hard to believe we’ll see it continue another 50 years in its present form. Self-supporting royalty with wealth and honorary titles, maybe. But state-owned private residence castles and public financial support? Seems unlikely, no matter what the Windsors do to try to keep themselves relevant. A model more like other European royal families, where they’re mostly just, you know, glam rich people, rather than quasi-government officials, seems far more realistic. Honestly, most Brits I know don’t think it would have lasted this long without the general post-war affection for QEII and her own personal longevity. She’s a beloved British tradition; Almost a mascot in some ways. Her kids, and their kids? Not so much.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Most European working royal families are the same as the BRF – official-or-unofficial Heads of State, quasi-governmental officials. Living in taxpayer-owned palaces, taxpayer supported. Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, Norway, Luxembourg.

      • S says:

        Bulk of those royal families have been “restored” by their governments as tourist attractions, ironically generally to ape the British Royal Family. Not all live in public housing, and none have official government duties, beyond, perhaps, declaring a government session open. The only official power the Danish Queen holds, for instance, is preventing her direct descendants from marrying or leaving the country without permission. She has zero, even ceremonial, influence on governing.

        None are the official head of state, like QEII remains. And even if it’s understood that’s for show, that’s simply a long-held precedent, not formal British law. (Ask America how dangerously easy it is to dismantle unlegislated, but long-held norms by an unscrupulous leader.)

        There is no other royal family in Europe that receives even close to the level and amount of financial support that the British royal family does, and the Queen knows this all too well.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        @S, I thought the King of Spain is the official head of state of Spain. I could very well be wrong.

      • notasugarhere says:

        The ones I listed all live in public housing, their expenses are paid by the taxpayers, and they perform the same governmental figurehead role as the British monarch. Many of them are the Head of State or Chief of State for their country, but not the Head of Government (Prime Minister), just like QEII is the Chief of State. She has no official powers, she is the same figurehead as the rest of them.

        Person for person, the Monegasque, Dutch, and Luxembourgish monarchies are the most costly to taxpayers even when you figure in the 600 million the UK costs per year.

        The public-facing (tax supported) royal families, including the British monarchy, are all figureheads with no power. The private ones often remain absolute monarchs, like the dictator prince of Liechtenstein.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        All new laws have to be signed by the Danish Queen before they can be enforced and any new government has to be formally recognized/accepted by the Queen. Those are her constitutional duties – and she is the official Head of State. The royal succession is put down in law and can only be changed by a constitutional change, which is actually a pretty big deal.

        The Swedish King, on the other hand, has no constitutional duties.

      • Anna says:

        British law is founded in case law. The Queen is creating something of a precedent here. And she is not upholding the British Constitution nor the British Tradition regarding Queen-ing or parliamentarism or democracy.

      • noway says:

        The one you are leaving out is very small but this royal actually does work and runs the country is Prince Albert of Monaco.

      • Ali says:

        I’m agreeing with S.

        All of these excuses and surmises trying to find a way make her out to be “of and for the people” when an objective look at who she is and what she stands for requires no mental gymnastics.

        She’s of the monarchy. If her hands are tied, she gave them up willingly.

    • Eliza says:

      Her job is the very definition of sit there and look pretty. She is in meetings with all the PMs but they just tell her what’s going on and she signs off. That’s the deal. The Queen gave up all power of crown decades ago; she got the anti monarchists off her back and more money in the deal. Royals are ceremonial, kitschy, gossip fodder, apolitical puppets. But hey people get to say they’ve had the same head of state since childhood and their transitions are being upheld.

    • KatV says:

      It is not true that the Queen of Denmark doesn’t hold the same role as QE2. She is the official head of state and appoints every new government – however she is required to follow the advice of the government formed by the majority. As well, she participates in state council meetings with the pm. So yes, they are literally the same formal figures. It’s better than having a president IMO.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        That is correct – and it would be fairly easy to learn this through wikipedia fx.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        Like KatV says, the Danish Queen attends State Council each month, not just with the PM but will all the minsters of the government.

    • grumpy says:

      She is showing commitment to a democratic process. There was a referendum, people voted for Brexit. The representatives of the people have spent the last 3 years putting their own interests ahead of the people who voted them into power. They have tried to put the kibosh on something the people voted for. A referendum people have wanted for decades. Tony Blair of all people promised a referendum in 2004 and 2005,Yes long before Trump, immigration crises, populism, Russia, brain washing via Facebook yadda yadda yadda, the British people were not happy and wanted a vote. He then back-peddled (unsurprisngly as he is a lying P.O.S.) You can’t pick and choose when to decide something is anti-democratic. BoJo is doing what he has to do to fulfill a democratic vote.

      • StarGreek says:

        @grumpy

        “She is showing commitment to a democratic process. There was a referendum, people voted for Brexit.”

        A referendum that was based on electoral fraud and nonsensical lies is not democratic. People also voted for Hitler, he did very good with the power he was given, right?

        Unfortunately people have the bad habit to vote with their feet instead of their heads.

        To be honest I am happy if there’s no 2nd referendum, because my preferred option would have been to annul the first. It was basically a scam.

      • Jame says:

        The referendum was non-binding and suspending parliament right before the biggest activity since WWII is NOT democratic.

  3. Nic919 says:

    PM Harper did this in Canada in 2008 to avoid a no confidence vote and the GG ultimately agreed to prorogue the parliament as well. That said Michaelle Jean took a few days to consult with advisers before agreeing to it.

    It could have been the only decision the queen could make, but it sure doesn’t look like much thought was put into it. It also conveniently pushes the Andrew headlines to the side.

    • Arpeggi says:

      Harper did it more than once actually, to avoid no-confidence votes. But yeah, there was one time where the GG waited, in part because the opposition parties might have been able to get together and form a government; GG was waiting to see if they’d come to her and ask but they never managed to reach an agreement (in part because it would have been weird for to Bloc to be part of the government and no one knew how to handle that)

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      I remember that. I still don’t understand why the idea of coalition government remains anathema in Canada. Coalition could have been formed even without the Bloc (or the Bloc could agree to participate?). At the time, Harper depicted the possible coalition as being some kind of anti-democratic coup. It would have been the opposite and kept government open.

  4. Steff says:

    Hey, remember when she and prince Charles were caught in the paradise papers? That should have been a bigger deal but alas it wasn’t…

  5. Margareth says:

    I’m sorry to say this but it’s time to abdicate for her.

  6. Siobhan says:

    The Queen won’t refuse requests like this – the ‘request’ is simply a formality. She would never say no because she is a monarch, not an elected politician. It’s nothing to do with her feelings about Brexit.

    • Amy says:

      Exactly, the headline isn’t really fair – any action she takes isn’t based on whether or not she “approves” of him doing it in the sense that it is also what she would do. She has no option based on convention but to do what he says – essentially, the monarch is a rubber stamp at this point in history.

      • Kitten says:

        I guess I just don’t understand how *convention* even applies here. Like, this isn’t just a typical vote, this is literally a vote to decide the future of the country. Surely, an exception could be made in such an extreme circumstance?

        And please understand that as an American, I am in no way judging. We have a very recent track record of ignoring the implementation of extreme intervention in favor of tacit and unsuccessful incremental push-backs.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        It is hard to understand indeed. It seems purely ceremonial, like the “speech from the throne.”

    • hoopjumper says:

      I’m an American and honestly confused about this situation. It seems to me what you’re saying is true, and that it would have been more “political” to refuse the request than to grant it. He is the PM, after all, so the Queen saying “no”(or doing anything other than granting the request) seems like it would have been less democratic, not more. But I could be wrong.

    • Maria says:

      Nah, she could have refused if she wanted to. It would have made waves and a possible Constitutional crisis, but she could do it. But that would be if she cared more about fairness to the people of the UK than about retaining her royal status and maintaining the monarchy – which she doesn’t.

    • Valiantly Varnished says:

      Exactly. She’s a Constitutional Monarch. She has no say ultimately in what goes on politically. It was a gesture. Not a request for permission. She had no choice but to say yes whether she agreed or not. A lot of Americans simply don’t understand how the British political system works and the Queen’s role within it.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Back to the Walter Bagehot quote from the 19th century, referenced in a post a few days ago.

        “We must not let in daylight upon magic. We must not bring the Queen into the combat of politics, or she will cease to be reverenced by all combatants; she will become one combatant among many.”

      • StarGreek says:

        @Valiantly

        Hmm No, you are wrong on this issue.

        She can reject a request, under the royal prerogative. It is not a gesture at all.
        However, the BRF is too ‘weak’ in this instance to exert pressure of this kind and she went along with it. Rejecting it also risked to alienate Johnson and the ruling party, not wise when the monarchy depends on the government’s purse.

      • Nic919 says:

        The same situation happened in Canada and the GG didn’t automatically have to consent. She consulted advisers prior to making a decision. That took a few days. Here the Queen didn’t even take more than a day. The basis for prorogation can be found to be inappropriate and thus rejected. There was certainly enough to at least pretend to contemplate the issue. This was a quick rubber stamp.

      • Valiantly Varnished says:

        @StarGreek Im not wrong though. She could have said no which would have resulted in a Constitutional crisis. Which if you look at QE’s history she has always bent over backwards to avoid.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Valiantly

        Hmm no, we are already in a constitutional crisis, or there wouldn’t have been Corbyn and others suggesting to form an ‘alternative’ parliament after a no confidence vote and with no elections.

        The entire constitutional structure of the UK is gone already, QEII rejecting the request would have deepened the crisis but not created one that is already there.

        In a few words… in UK we’re entirely scr**ed now.

      • notasugarhere says:

        This is like people blaming King Felipe for not freeing Catalonia. He has no power to do so, just like QEII ultimately does not have the power to say, “No”.

      • Maria says:

        The Catalan issue is only like the Brexit issue in that Felipe cannot force or influence a referendum same as the Queen. But she does have royal prerogative not to prorogue Parliament if she doesn’t feel it is best.

      • notasugarhere says:

        She doesn’t get to “feel” or “decide” related to politics. She does what the elected government tells her to do, just like Felipe.

      • Maria says:

        She still has royal prerogative to not give assent to proroguing Parliament.

    • Samantha says:

      How convenient for her though to pretend that she ‘must’ do nothing when there actually is a crisis in the country. She uses this to her advantage so she can be praised for doing nothing. What’s the point of having a monarch if they cannot and refuse to step in when there’s an idiot with his own agenda making a mess? Then an elected head of state is better, like the Republic of Ireland has a Prime Minister and a President. If there’s nothing the Queen can do aside from wave and look grumpy at events, why bother keeping her? Her family’s getting more expensive and more embarrassing every year.

    • deezee says:

      Exactly! She has a figure head position. She cannot interfere with politics and the “will of the people.”

      The hate she is getting for this in inappropirate. She does not get involved with politics.

      • A says:

        No, the criticism is deserved because it shows what a sham the British Royal family is. It is the longest of long cons.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        @A, I agree with you! If ever there was a time when the crown needed to get involve for the good of the country IT IS NOW. From what I understand (could be wrong) QEII could/can force a second referendum on BREXIT to give citizens a opportunity to vote on BREXIT knowing what BREXIT really is and what BREXIT entails.

        Disclaimer: I am a Yank and apologize in advance to any fellow UK posters I have offended by posting my opinion on the government of a country that is not my own.

      • notasugarhere says:

        No, she cannot force a new vote. She. Is. A. Figurehead.

      • deezee says:

        @A and @BayTampaBay No she cannot. She is JUST a figurehead. As a member of a commonwealth nation, I know perfectly well what role the Queen plays as the official leader of my country and hers.

      • KatV says:

        What notasugarhere and deezee said.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Then if she is only a figurehead, then why is she there and why do they even bother asking her permission? This is the crux of the problem of a remaining ‘monarch,’ is it not?

      • StarGreek says:

        @Bay

        She constitutionally can reject these requests but never rejected one and likely never will. If anything positive can come out of this consent she gave… well.. it probably spells out the end of the monarchy.

        Many are gathering in squares tonight and some people who were interviewed clearly said monarchy needs to go.

    • Flffgrrrrlr says:

      This is a good explanation. This is more fundamental than requests/convention – it’s the nature of the British constitution. Last time the monarch seriously interfered with parliament we had a civil war, following which the monarchy were reinstalled on the basis that they do not interfere with parliament and government- that’s constitutional monarchy. So it’s not really a request or something the queen chooses or doesn’t choose. Parliament suspension: Readers’ questions answered https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-49495575

  7. Digital Unicorn says:

    Bad move Queenie, this only makes the case for a republic more popular, although TBH she wouldn’t have refused as we all know she won’t rock the boat that funds her.

    The UK parliamentary democracy is now under attack just like the US democracy – make room for us Brits are the bar!

    • Jaded says:

      Yup, and as Siobhan says above, even though the Queen, as Head of State, must remain neutral with respect to political matters this is a bad decision. It prevents MPs being able to play their full democratic part in the Brexit process and a number of senior politicians, including former Prime Minister John Major, are already threatening to go to court to stop it, and a legal challenge is already in process. It’s going to get real ugly real fast.

      • StarGreek says:

        Yes it is already a mess, many MPs writing letters or threatening legal action.

        Annoyed that 3 years have been wasted in theory to avert a no deal Brexit and in reality to produce the conditions for it to take place.

  8. Maya Memsaab says:

    I’m a PhD student from India currently in Scotland (St Andrews, funnily enough :/) with a British partner. Have never felt more precarious and unwanted. I am on paper one of the “worthy” immigrants that this country supposedly wants? What they mean is that the UK is now a place that will welcome anyone has money to pay into its obscene and racist immigration system.

    I moved here 4 years ago to get a doctorate and start a family with my partner. I am part of a community here. I teach British kids at the university. My ‘worth’ is more than what the financial value I bring to this country or the taxes I pay. I am part of a community here – as are other EU and Non-EU migrants. While we are constantly asked to prove our worth to this country, what worth does the country have to prove to us? What does this country have anymore to offer? More racism? More insecurity?

    My country of birth, India, has its own set of MASSIVE political problems. India is currently under a majoritarian right wing government. The sad thing is, while I was born in India, I *chose* to move to the UK. I feel conned.

    • StarGreek says:

      I am a migrant as well (from EU), who naturalised as British. And you know what, even though I am white I have been attacked twice after the referendum because ‘I talk funny’ (i.e. with a foreign accent).

      I don’t pretend to be in your shoes as being a PoC non-EU migrant is 100 worse than having a foreign accent, but a society that does not even tolerate someone who clearly was not born on UK soil despite looking the same as the ‘locals’ is a fascist one.

      Our plan B today will be into looking to move away, even though my British hubby was not convinced it could go this bad.
      UK has ceased to be a democracy (plus we wouldn’t be able to take out health insurance for all of us).

      P.S. I feel conned as well after decades here.

      • Jaded says:

        Come to Canada – we’ll welcome you. We have our problems as well but nothing like what’s happening in the UK and ‘Murica.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Jaded

        If only! It will take time to get a visa anywhere as I am a little on the old side, although hubby has one of those jobs that come first in the skilled work categories.

      • Arpeggi says:

        @Jaded, we’re one Andrew Scheer away from being in the same mess as the US and the UK. On the provincial level, it’s already a mess; Legault in Qc and his catho-secularism makes it harder for immigrants to feel welcome, Ford in On is a shit fire, Jason Kenney is a paranoid climate change denier with ties to xenophobic groups, the NB Premier hates francophones… So yeah, I wouldn’t tell anyone to move to Canada right now, things might get real messy, real fast here too

      • Maya Memsaab says:

        I’m very very sorry that you experienced this vileness, StarGreek. And I hope your Plan B works out. Me and my partner also don’t see a future here anymore. Shame, because I adore Scotland but I refuse to let this quicksand of a country take us down with it. I hope you move on to better thing – we all deserve better.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Maya

        I hope the best things will come your way too.
        We didn’t deserve this but here we are and we need to find a way out.
        Don’t lose hope. Hugs <3

      • Erinn says:

        @Arpeggi

        Truth. We’re currently better but we have a lot of chances to royally screw up just as bad.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Erinn

        You’re right but here in UK we have two major problems at the same time, compared to other countries steering into the far right realm:

        - we have a right-wing government
        - we’ve Brexit

        The 2 things are related but at this point getting rid of one issue will not solve the other one.

      • Redgrl says:

        @arpeggi – yep, sadly…

    • Maria says:

      I feel your pain, Maya. I am $125,000 in debt with student loans from studying at UK universities, studying the English heritage and history I have studied all my life and were my life’s passion (and still are), I had job offers waiting for me at the end of my studies until Theresa May and Damian Green instituted new immigration reforms that forced me to leave. I tried all sorts of ways to establish myself and they failed. It broke my heart because England was and still feels like my true home. I gave up and went back to my original town. I hope you don’t have to. I am rooting for you.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Maria

        I have done my education since my GCSE in UK. Although I have an MA in humanities, my job is totally in another field because I was not British, got tons of excuses why I was not hired. I naturalised not long before the sh!treferendum and guess what, I had to hear idiots saying I was a ‘plastic Brit’ to my face, meaning not real British because I am not born here or with UK parents.
        I have lived in this country longer than anywhere else or in my native country…. this is my home but I feel crapped upon constantly because I don’t belong here due to an accident of birth

      • Maria says:

        Ugh StarGreek that is the worst. The xenophobia and racism is so depressing. Especially when all you want to do is contribute! Sending love <3

      • StarGreek says:

        Sending hugs back Maria <3

    • Spikey says:

      Understandably so. This is a mess all around. F+cking nationalism has plagued this continent for over two hundred years now. NOTHING good ever came of it, nothing. How is this toxic ideology not dead yet?

      I wish you the very best!

    • Red says:

      I can empathize with you. My husband and I are highly desired immigrants in the UK and we are looking to leave. I would recommend anyone who can, to get out of the sinking, xenophobic ship that is the UK.

  9. Myra says:

    Can a Brit explain what just happened and did TQ really have a choice or say in the matter??

    • Siobhan says:

      No, she didn’t technically have a choice or a say. The request is merely a formality. The monarch hasn’t refused a request from parliament for over 300 years.

      • S says:

        This is true. But it’s also true that had she wanted to, she could have had her advisors suggest she might withhold permission, since the majority of her subjects don’t agree with this move, which would have been a major Parliamentary headache for Johnson, and probably would have lead to a different deal being made. Such royal machinations behind closed doors have most certainly taken place previously.

        She didn’t have to publicly cross the PM to exert some influence, or just bring parties back to the table. She chose not to.

      • StarGreek says:

        @Siobhan

        She had a say but not a choice.

        I know it’s confusing for many and I apologise for the posts all over the thread saying the same stuff!

    • Jaded says:

      I’m not a Brit, I’m Canadian, but have a fairly good understanding of the Queen’s role in issues like this. In a nutshell, because she’s Monarch and Head of State she must remain politically neutral and defer to the Prime Minister and MPs. To do otherwise would require a constitutional overhaul that hasn’t been attempted in over 300 years. So although she meets with the Prime Minister regularly, she can’t vote and must never publicly intervene or give her opinions on any political matters.

  10. line says:

    Pathetic! She clearly shows that she has a bad sovereign she has. Brexit without agreement will not strengthen alliances with the countries of the British Commonwealth, which prefers to deal directly with Europe, China and the United States ….

    Then a Brexit without agreement could cause the breakup of the United Kingdom because Ireland have border issues and also like
    Scotland they not voted for Brexit, it’s just a bad idea. But maybe she got an agreement so that her favorite son Andie the pedophile is not affected by the Esptein lawsuit.

  11. Casey says:

    Goodbye and good riddance to the British empire! They ate the world and now they’re eating themselves. Goodbye!

    • Dee Kay says:

      This truly feels like karma for the violent, extractive, exploitative, oppressive, murderous, endlessly self-justifying British Empire. It would be funny except, once again, it will be the minorities and marginalized who will suffer the most. But the wealthy white elite is also going to suffer under a hard Brexit. No one will be unscathed during this next phase of British — soon to be only English — history.

  12. Angela Johnson says:

    As an American, right now I feel like with our government I’m in a bad, abusive relationship, and with Britain and the EU, now its like my parents just announced they are getting a public, messy divorce.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Well said. And as a Canadian, I’m watching all the cousins fight and hoping my family doesn’t get involved in it. But we will. Any Canadian readers, please pay attention to the coming federal campaign and don’t believe, as Americans did even until Bush, that the (lower-case) conservatives have the nation’s best interest at heart. Right-leaning parties everywhere have been radicalized over the past few decades. Canada’s right is now strictly right-wing — and reactionary.

  13. duchess of hazard says:

    The Queen could chose, and she chose her son in the end.

  14. Bluemoon says:

    The royal family are ALL parasites!

  15. OriginalLala says:

    Ugh, time for the Monarchy to go Bye-Bye methinks

  16. KatV says:

    It seems that people haven’t really understood the concept of a constitutional monarch.
    It was a formality. Siobhan has some really good responses.

    • Maria says:

      S and StarGreek have better responses. It’s not a formality.

      • KatV says:

        It really is. I’m sorry, but check up reliable sources online like this one: https://time.com/5630307/queen-elizabeth-no-deal-brexit/

      • Maria says:

        It says right in the article you posted she has royal prerogative to refuse permission to prorogue Parliament as it can only be done with her assent.
        Another quote that backs me up, from your article.
        “And if the Prime Minister has no majority—so, for example, if lawmakers stage a vote of no confidence in response—the Queen can refuse to follow his or her advice. ‘The Prime Minister’s advice is only binding on the Queen when the Prime Minister commands the confidence of Parliament,’ Hazell says.”
        MPS are already protesting the proroguing of Parliament.

      • notasugarhere says:

        It is a formality. She has no power over the government. It isn’t “hers”.

      • KatV says:

        Exactly @Maria. IF a vote of no confidence had been there. But there isn’t.
        I can find more links if needed, but this is not really my fight, just wanted to say how things work in a constitutional monarchy.

      • Maria says:

        That is not the only condition of her Parliamentary prerogative.

      • StarGreek says:

        It’s not a formality @KatV @notasugarhere

        The issue that many commenters here seems to get wrong is ‘constitutional power to reject the request’ vs. ‘actual power to reject to the request’.

        The Queen has constitutional power to reject it (through the royal prerogative) but has no actual ruling power and cannot go against it as it’d be a political act.
        The UK has not a written constitution and it complicates things as much is down to interpretation.

        However, saying “it’s a formality / gesture” is wrong as the request could be rejected in special cases.
        The fact that in this special instance the Queen has ignored her ‘special’ powers to agree with Johnson and Rees-Mogg who are two racist fascists is indicative that QEII loyalty is to the survival of the monarchy but has no interest in the country whatsoever.

        This was clear to many non-monarchists but seems difficult to digest for monarchists.
        To the latter: I’m sorry but the monarchy is done now.

      • KatV says:

        @stargreek – I have provided plenty of links explaining the royal prerogative. I do not contest the fact that it exists, but try to explain the nature of a constitutional monarchy. I do not consider myself a monarchist. I try to stay objective and I like to read up on matters like this.

      • notasugarhere says:

        That is not the nature of a constitutional monarchy. However much we might want her to say no, it isn’t her place. Her place is to do what the elected government tells her. She doesn’t wear a cape, except for the silly Garter ceremony, and she isn’t allowed to be a political “hero”. Her job is to do what the government tells her to do.

      • StarGreek says:

        @KatV @notasugarhere

        As a naturalised Brit, I know very well what I am talking about, as learning about the functioning of the government needs to be learnt in order to pass the LiTUK test. One cannot be naturalised without passing it. The Queen has the option to overrule PM and Parliament if she wanted, you are confusing the right to do something vs. the will to do something.

        And out of self-preservation she will play along, she’s 92 but not that stupid. Johnson and Mogg would start a civil war if she tries to stop them, they have already begun to blackmail MPs who rebel against them now.

        To be honest, I don’t know why QEII is made to be a ‘liberal’ soul who couldn’t stop Johnson in his tracks.
        Let’s face it, even if she was ruling she wouldn’t have stopped him, she just doesn’t give a fig.

      • notasugarhere says:

        She is not unintelligent or uninformed. An idiot, an ostrich yes, but not unintelligent. She knows that she has no right to stop this, and if she had done so, that would have made some people happier. Telling Boris no would have made some support the monarchy more, but she didn’t “choose” to do that because she doesn’t have that choice. She learned some lessons after Diana and the Windsor fire.

      • nic919 says:

        GG Michaelle Jean delayed proroguing parliament in Canada because she was waiting to see if the opposition parties were prepared to form a coalition government. Since Canadian parliamentary convention derives from British parliamentary convention, there is no reason why she couldn’t have waited to see if Corbyn could form something and have the majority of the will of Parliament.

    • Ali says:

      Formalities do not have to be followed. It’s convention (supposedly since no one wants to believe she’s in actual agreement with him) that drives her to not withhold her approval.

      • KatV says:

        Please read the article more carefully then. I do say this to be difficult but as someone living in a constitutional monarchy. It is a prerogative but one that would only be followed if no confidence vote had been pulled, as the article says.
        Sorry thus comment was for the poster above.

      • Maria says:

        No, she has that royal prerogative regardless. The Prime Minister not having a confidence vote is another aspect in which she can utilize it.

      • KatV says:

        That should have said ‘don’t ‘ sorry for that typing on an IPad:) yes I realize it is not the only condition, but this would be one where she could have done something. She is supposed to follow the government.
        https://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/LLN-2016-0011/LLN-2016-0011.pdf
        Please read the definition of constitutional monarchy in this paper.

      • Maria says:

        I’m not debating a constitutional monarchy in general. I am saying that in this instance, in the issue of deciding to prorogue Parliament, she has royal prerogative, something that is written on the Parliament site itself. She has the choice whether or not to say yes to these requests, even if a “no” is ill-advised. There is a PDF on the Parliament UK site you can download about the royal prerogative and its legal implications, unfortunately it will not allow me to link it.

      • KatV says:

        But she will follow the advice of her PM. And this lies in the nature of the constitutional monarchy. So you cannot leave that out of the discussion.

      • KatV says:

        I have read that thank you. Not that Wikipedia is the best source in the world, but I do believe it is carefully explained here, why the sovereign will follow the advice of the PM. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_prerogative_in_the_United_Kingdom

      • Maria says:

        That lies more in the precedence she has established rather than the legal precedent itself.
        So in other words, she can still say no if the Privy Council advises her the PM’s desire to close Parliament is not sound.
        She’ll follow the advice of the PM to protect the monarchy because she doesn’t want to make waves and interrupt her source of funding. But it may cost her a bit, in this case.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Again, she doesn’t get to decide. Being advised, no matter by whom, still ends up in the same place. She doesn’t run the government, the government runs her.

      • Maria says:

        I am not commenting on her running the government. I am saying that she has the legal royal prerogative to say no, in this instance, to closing Parliament. It’s there. It exists.
        Of course we know she won’t go against the PM, for reasons of her own. But she has this prerogative – it exists. I don’t understand why that is being contested here.

      • KatV says:

        But I don’t understand that you contest the established fact that the royal prerogative does not work like that – it’s not about her “will” to go against the PM. I do not contest the prerogative being there – I’m merely trying to say that it doesnt work the way you say. It is fundamental in the constitutional monarchy. I feel I have provided enough links for this.
        However, it doesn’t matter :) thank you for a nice and sober discussion :)

    • KatV says:

      The prorogation and summoning of Parliament remains a prerogative power of the Crown, although its dissolution is now a statutory provision under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011. The Deputy Private Secretary to HM The Queen confirmed, in a letter to the Chair of the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee of 16 March 2015, that The Queen would “always act on the advice of the Government of the day” as to setting the first meeting of a Parliament.24
      From the paper on royal prerogative which is to be found on the parliament website.

    • PleaseAndThankYou says:

      @KatV and @notasugarhere

      You’re both being quite obnoxious, piling on @StarGreek. You’re also both wrong, while @StarGreek is correct. So calm down.

      • KatV says:

        Why on earth are you being personal about this? Everyone else is discussing in a nice tone, providing facts. We just don’t agree on how to interpret the use of the royal prerogative. I’m quite offended by your comment. I’m very calm thank you very much.

      • Tina says:

        No, KatV and nota are broadly correct.

  17. Wadsworth the Butler says:

    This feels like the beginning of the end for the Monarchy. It is William’s generation that will feel most betrayed by this decision, and most repulsed by her continuing defense of Andrew. Unfortunately, this is likely to be their lasting, and possibly defining, memory of her reign.

  18. phlyfiremama says:

    How entirely convenient, to have the government shut down while her favorite child is under suspicion of MULTIPLE crimes. Time for the “royal” parasites to be out out to pasture, and who can make that happen? The government she just dismissed. I cry shenanigans!!

  19. Lala11_7 says:

    An obscenely rich person whose family got their wealth off the blood and bones of MILLIONS for HUNDREDS of years…being inhumane?

    SHOCKED…I TELL YOU…I AM SHOCKED!

    Sigh…

  20. Candykat says:

    So can parliament call a vote of no confidence now? (Do they have the numbers to win?)

    • StarGreek says:

      Likely not, as they won’t re-sit before October 14th and at that point only 17 days will be left before no-deal Brexit.

      With this manoeuvre Johnson avoided to lose the no confidence vote too.

  21. JM says:

    I bet Charles III would have said no.

    • Anon says:

      I’ve read that the Brexiteers like Nigel Farage, Boris Johnson, and Jacob Rees-Mogg HATE Prince Charles.

    • notasugarhere says:

      I don’t think he would have. Friend of Jimmie Saville and personal friend of the Saudi royals Charles?

      If he had been king for the last five years, he might have used his “advise” function to try to make more peace behind the scenes. IDK if that would have had a impact or not, because much of the impact Charles has had is measured in decades not a few years.

      The Queen does her engagements, her job, and goes home. The same as Anne does. Charles has the appearance of caring more about The People. Creating large projects that have lasting impact, from preserving traditional farming techniques to the Prince’s Trust. He has done more for more individuals in the UK than the Queen has, but at the end of the day his role as monarch would be the same. Figurehead who does what the elected officials tell him to do.

  22. Angela82 says:

    Has she been cancelled yet? I say this as a Canadian.

  23. Sharon k says:

    Wait until they see what a mess brexit will really be.
    They voted yes to curtail immigration but the country is still loaded w EU immigrants and Arabs.
    Good luck Queen E. You’ll need it between no deal and your pedo son!!
    Payback for dissing Diana. Karmas a bitch!!

    • StarGreek says:

      “the country is still loaded w EU immigrants”

      Of which I am one. Uh, those pesky foreigners contributing to the tax paying pool eh ;-)

  24. Dani says:

    I’m surprised how shocked everyone here is by this move. The Queen was never this open minded, free thinking Liberal everyone seems to peg her to be. She was in fact pleased with Trumps visit and she more than likely is pro Brexit. The Royals aren’t nice, considerate people.

  25. SM says:

    Ugh. Is that a surprise a monarch signed on an undemocratic policy: a man who was not voted in by people suspends the elected Parliament. Uk is fast catching up with the authoritarian in America. This is why I have such huge problem with this fascination with Royals. They hardly belong in democratic society because they rarely have democratic thinking.

  26. tcbc says:

    Even if she felt she had no choice but to accede to Johnson’s request, she could have at least signaled her disapproval by waiting a couple of days or a week (perhaps making it known that she was consulting with advisors as the Canadian GG did) to make it official. She did not, therefore we must assume she agrees with Johnson.

    And choosing to remain neutral in a fight against bigots is the same as siding with them.

  27. Valerie says:

    Wtf? As they once sang on SCTV, I hate the bloody queen.

  28. Lali says:

    It’s not my government, so I don’t think I can truly understand what is going on and try to criticize. I went to the Dailymail site and all the best rated commentaries are supporting Boris and TQ so apparently this is what the majority of the british wants and we should respect it.
    I hope it all goes well for them.

    • StarGreek says:

      The Daily Mail site is a ce$$pool of racists and fascists.

      It’s like saying Fox News represents the views of all Americans.

  29. Brunswickstoval says:

    Waking up to this as an Australian. Hopefully now Americans can also see how ridiculous it is for us to be part of this monarchy mess. Our head of state doesn’t even live in our country. She has no power and is pointless but we still have to pay lip service to her. And pay for a Governor General to do nothing on her behalf. Ridiculous. And makes me so angry.

    • StarGreek says:

      This has woken up Republicanism in UK, hopefully you guys works towards being a republic as well.

  30. Molly says:

    Boris put TQ in a losing situation. Why does he remind me of Trump. From what I’ve read I don’t understand why TQ was asked to make a decision on something of this nature. If she is apolitical why is she deciding something that is clearly political? I think the entire situation is terrible for the people of GB and really puts the Monarch status like democracy on hold.

  31. Tanya says:

    I don’t think she has a choice. But to be clear: she’s pro-Brexit. They all are.

  32. msd says:

    She has no actual power – and that’s exactly as it should be. No one voted her in. Having said that, I’m amused by people who ascribe liberal views to the Royal Family. They’re really kidding themselves. It’s a conservative and archaic institution.

  33. tw says:

    Again, why is royalty still a thing?!?!?

    • Irishgal says:

      Because history and tourism and people want it in the main in the UK. Just like some of the common wealth countries have voted to kept the monarchy as their figure heads. And others have forcibly removed them like us!

  34. mew says:

    This is going to be so interesting, I’ve had my popcorn ready for a year now, just waiting for this mess to happen. Too bad for everyone who will suffer because of the whole Brexit thing but maybe we learn a lesson or two.

  35. RoyalBlue says:

    She does not have executive powers like the US president and one of her roles is to give official consent to the democratically elected.

    To consider the alternative: If the monarchy were disbanded and replaced with a republic with a president as head of state, the end result would have been the same. The president would have signed off unless there was a clear breech of law. The only advantage of that scenario is the handing down of power by birthright and public spending would be greatly reduced. Not a bad option.

  36. Ms. says:

    It’s really sad to see fascism popping up again. Just, really sad. I feel so helpless.