British Parliament Hands Boris Johnson Another Brexit Blow. Everything Is Still Chaos.

The Prime Minister is essentially vowing to ignore parliament.

Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

In Parliament’s first Saturday session since the Falklands war—dubbed, questionably, “Super Saturday”—Democratic Unionists from Ireland ensured the passage of the Letwin amendment to trigger a Brexit extension request required by the Benn Act. Confused? Me too. Read on.

Heading into the session, Prime Minister Boris Johnson needed the parliament to provide a “meaningful vote” in favor of his Brexit plan before an 11 P.M. deadline on Saturday. Without that support, legislation known as the Benn Act requires Johnson to ask the European Union to push the deadline for leaving the EU back from October 31 to January 31. That’s not what Johnson wants. He has staked his whole prime ministership on getting it done by the end of the month.

The House of Commons rebuffed Johnson on Saturday. In a 322-306 vote, it passed an amendment forcing Johnson to bring the Brexit withdrawal deal he hammered out with Brussels last week before them. Basically: No Brexit, until the parliament can vote on the whole thing.

Outside Parliament, streets were filled with demonstrators who oppose Johnson:

In typical fashion, Johnson is saying he won’t play by the rules—pledging he would not request an extension from EU leaders. “I will not negotiate a delay with the EU,” he said, “and neither does the law compel me to do so.”

Today’s vote could mean a mind-numbing number of new steps to pass the deal, presenting a race against time: EU leaders would need to return to Brussels to approve any new extension. Then there are the UK parliament’s own maneuvers that could continue to stymy the prime minister. And when the House of Commons does take up the deal, Members of Parliament can introduce even more amendments to shape the terms of a Brexit. Read through the thread below for more on the messy mechanics of what happens next:

A simpler take away comes from Peter Bone, a member of Johnsons’ Conservative Party who voted against the Letwin amendment. “I’m fed up. It’s been a complete waste of time. Nothing’s happened and it’s spoiled my birthday,” he said in an interview. “I have to be here talking to you, rather than eating cake.”

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate