Suspension of parliament: MPs react with fury and Davidson set to quit after Johnson move – live news | Politics

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Evening everyone. This just in from the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg:

Laura Kuenssberg
(@bbclaurak)

Ruth Davidson’s spokesman ‘Ruth’s decision is not connected to today’s events in any way’ – suggestions announcement has been planned for a few days


August 28, 2019





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Protesters have been gathering in Manchester’s Albert Square, many armed with umbrellas – some in solidarity with Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protest and some simply to protect against the rain.

They are chanting “stop the coup”, and holding signs reading “Hands off” and “Protect our democracy”.

One of the organisers, Emma, a 26-year-old immigration consultant, said: “I’m here because I’m angry and shocked that our democracy could be ripped out from underneath us while we‘re asleep at the wheel.” She said she and her friend Noora had previously said they should be doing something, and today they said “we don’t care if anyone else shows up, we’re heading down to Manchester town centre. We tweeted about it and everyone got onboard.”

Noora, 27, a standup comedian, said they were inspired by the umbrella movement of Hong Kong. “We’re here to protest against the downgrading of democracy that is happening in the UK at the moment … I feel like we should make some kind of a stand. It might seem minor but you’re showing that it can’t continue like this.”

Maya Wolfe-Robinson
(@mwolferobinson)

Protestors chant “stop the coup” in Manchester’s Albert Square, armed with brollies – apparently as a nod to Hong Kong’s pro democracy protestors, not because it also happens to be raining pic.twitter.com/PSyUlR5RFi


August 28, 2019

They were joined by Rory and Margaret, retired lecturers in their 70s. Rory said: “It’s the most flagrant attack on democracy that I can remember. It’s bad enough that [Boris Johnson] was elected leader by a handful of people, but what was this ‘taking back control’ all about? And sovereignty of parliament? Parliament has just been overruled. I think it’s an absolute outrage.”

Tallulah, 17, said she thought what was going on was “absolutely ridiculous”. “The facade of a democracy is being ripped apart.” William, 18, agreed with her. “It’s absurd. I thought it was a joke the first time I saw it the article about the Queen. But unfortunately it’s not satire. And here we are.”

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Ruth Davidson is expected to quit as leader of the Scottish Conservative party because of her irreconcilable differences with Boris Johnson over Brexit and the pressures of motherhood.

Scottish Tory sources said an announcement was imminent. Davidson was “considering her position”, one source said, although he stressed it was not connected to Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament.

Davidson’s spokesman said: “Ruth will make her decision clear in due course and there will be no further comment this evening.”

Davidson made abundantly clear during the Tory leadership campaign that she did not believe Johnson was the right man for the job. One of Johnson’s first acts as prime minister was to sack her close friend and ally David Mundell, who served as Scottish secretary for five years.

Ruth Davidson, lining up alongside Sadiq Khan, in opposition to Boris Johnson, during a BBC referendum debate at Wembley Arena in 2016.

Ruth Davidson, lining up alongside Sadiq Khan, in opposition to Boris Johnson, during a BBC referendum debate at Wembley Arena in 2016. Photograph: Reuters

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Ruth Davidson to quit as Scottish Tory leader

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Hammond: MPs will have to act next week

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Lawyers seeking to reverse Boris Johnson’s move to prorogue parliament hope a Scottish court will also hold a far faster hearing on whether the measure is unconstitutional and illegal.

A legal team acting for Joanna Cherry and 74 other MPs and peers expect to be in court in Edinburgh this Friday morning to urge Scotland’s civil court, the court of session, to block the proroguing agreed today by the Queen.

They had already won approval for a full hearing of their legal challenge to Johnson’s proroguing strategy on Friday 6 September next week. They will now ask the court to hear that case early next week, following Johnson’s gambit on Wednesday.

Jolyon Maugham QC, the anti-Brexit lawyer who helped coordinate the legal challenge through his Good Law Project, said they believe the courts are able to reverse the decision even though it has been approved by the Queen:

The MPs’ lawyer, Aidan O’Neill QC, is expected to attack Johnson and the privy council’s request of the Queen on Wednesday rather than the Queen’s decision to approve it.

O’Neill will argue the court can order UK ministers to request that the Queen reverses the prorogument, again via the privy council. Either side is likely to immediately appeal against the judge’s decision whichever way it goes, leading to series of urgent court hearings likely to end up at the UK supreme court.

Meanwhile, the European Movement in Scotland held a demonstration against Johnson’s “coup” in central Edinburgh on Wednesday.

European Movement Sc
(@euromovescot)

Ready to march to #stopthecoup #stopbrexit and protect democracy #Edinburgh4Europe. @DPGwyther @joannaccherry @NicolaSturgeon pic.twitter.com/NOZ0fKRvv8


August 28, 2019

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Rees-Mogg: ‘This is a completely normal procedure’

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