Government refuses to say whether Boris Johnson apologised to Queen in phone call after Supreme Court ruling

The Independent Politics 1 month ago

Boris Johnson and the Queen have discussed the momentous Supreme Court ruling that his shut down of parliament was unlawful, but an official declined to say if he apologised.

The prime minister spoke with her by telephone before his dash back from New York to – it is expected – make an emergency statement to the House of Commons on Wednesday.

A government source would not set out what was discussed, saying: “We never, in any circumstances, discuss the content of conversations between the prime minister and Her Majesty.”

It also emerged that Mr Johnson will not arrive back in the UK in time for the reopening of parliament, at 11.30am, which could anger some MPs who have demanded his presence.

His flight is not expected to land back in the UK until around lunchtime at the earliest – after his speech to the United Nations was put back until later on Tuesday evening in New York.

The source would not say whether the prime minister considered cancelling his speech, in order to be at Westminster for a statement as parliament opens, or whether John Bercow had been informed.

The Supreme Court has ruled against Boris Johnson by declaring his government unlawfully shut down parliament for five weeks
Lady Hale handed down the historic verdict, hailed by opposition MPs and anti-Brexit campaigners. She said all 11 judges were unanimous in deciding that the case is “justiciable”, so the government loses that part of the argument. “The court is bound to conclude therefore that the decision to advise Her Majesty to prorogue was unlawful because it had the effect of frustrating or preventing the ability of Parliament to carry out its constitutional functions.”
Gina Miller and her team react outside the Supreme Court are the verdict. She said: “Today is not a win for any individual or cause. It is a win for Parliamentary sovereignty, the separation of powers and independence of our British courts. Crucially, today’s ruling confirms that we are a nation governed by the rule of law, laws that everyone, even the Prime Minister, are subject to."
A person dressed as a caricature of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a prison uniform stands outside the Supreme Court
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called for Mr Johnson to “consider his position” following the landmark decision, while Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said he was “not fit to be prime minister”
Scottish National Party (SNP) Westminster leader Ian Blackford raises his arms as he comes outside. He said: "This is an absolutely stunning judgement by the Supreme Court today." He went on to say, "we all want to get back to work, and quite frankly, on the back of this, Boris Johnson must resign immediately."
Crowds outside celebrated the verdict
Delegates at the Labour party conference applaud after hearing the news
Speaker John Bercow said MPs must now “convene without delay” and confirmed the Commons would return at 11.30am on Wednesday
Gina Miller said: "“As a result of this judgment, Parliament is open, it was never prorogued. I urge MPs to get back to work immediately.”
MPs Anna Soubry, Liz Saville Roberts and Caroline Lucas, together with SNP leader Ian Blackford, react. Green MP Caroline Lucas has said the Supreme Court’s decision is “just the start”
“The UK deserves a Prime Minister and a Government who act with honesty, integrity and in a manner consistent with our constitution, at all times."
AP
The SNP’s Joanna Cherry QC says: “Boris Johnson’s position is untenable and he should have the guts to resign.”
EPA
Tom Tugendhat MP returned to the chamber in the House of Commons within minutes of the Supreme Court ruling

“It would be totally unfair to say we are not trying to get back as soon as possible,” the source said.

“It is important, as prime minister of the United Kingdom, that he delivers this speech, the United Nations general assembly is an important event.”

 

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