‘Outrageous. Ridiculous. Dictatorship.’ What Boris Johnson’s Cabinet used to say about shutting down Parliament
A few months ago, Tory MPs were telling us that proroguing Parliament would be an attack on democracy – but where are they now?
They’re lining up behind Boris Johnson’s plan to do just that – shutting down Parliament to force through an extreme no deal Brexit, for which he has no mandate.
They don’t want you to remember what they said – but we thought we’d remind them anyway.
The former Tory leadership contender, who turned into a key Boris Johnson cheerleader and is now the Health Secretary, said the idea of shutting Parliament goes “against everything those men who waded onto those beaches fought and died for“, adding “I will not have it.”
Remember that time Matt Hancock said prorogation would go against “everything that those men who waded onto those beaches fought and died for”….? pic.twitter.com/KrJmdmYvH7
— Daniel Kraemer (@dcakraemer) August 28, 2019
What’s more, he even wrote to every MP in Parliament firmly expressing his opposition to shutting down Parliament, labelling the idea as “not a serious policy of a Prime Minister in the 21st century“.
Proroguing Parliament undermines parliamentary democracy and risks a general election. I rule it out and call on all candidates to do the same pic.twitter.com/4aaAK3Tq8M
— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) June 6, 2019
The former Home Secretary, also in June, described the idea of shutting Parliament as “absolutely outrageous“.
She said: “The idea of leaving the EU to take back more control into Parliament, and to consider the idea of closing Parliament to do that is the most extraordinary idea I’ve ever heard“.
Proroguing parliament is “the most extraordinary idea I’ve ever heard” and a “ridiculous suggestion” says Amber Rudd. #Ridge
Follow Sunday politics live: https://t.co/YjBs9UGtw8 pic.twitter.com/h44OLXR2Td
— Ridge on Sunday (@RidgeOnSunday) June 16, 2019
Now, she is back in Cabinet as Boris Johnson’s Work and Pensions Secretary, facilitating a profoundly undemocratic act which only two months ago she labelled “a ridiculous suggestion“.
The now Chancellor of the Exchequer was also starkly opposed to shutting down Parliament.
During the Tory leadership debate, he slammed the idea in front of Boris Johnson, saying: “we don’t deliver on democracy by trashing democracy… we are not selecting a dictator of our country.”
“You don’t deliver on democracy by trashing democracy . . . we are not selecting a dictator of our country”. Yes, these were the exact words of chancellor Sajid Javid just 3 months ago. via @Haggis_UK pic.twitter.com/IpqVXxJjxS
— Ian Fraser (@Ian_Fraser) August 28, 2019
Now that Boris Johnson’s actions amount to a slide towards dictatorship, depriving MPs of a voice over Brexit at this crucial time, Sajid Javid is ignoring his own warnings and is happy to serve under “a dictator of our country”.
Gove is another former Tory leadership contender who did not hold back his feelings about shutting down Parliament, but who now serves in Boris Johnson’s hardline Cabinet.
The man who is now in charge of the Government’s no-deal preparations has fully embraced the reckless “do or die” pledge to crash out of the EU on October 31, despite having said that closing Parliament would be a “terrible thing“.
That time Michael Gove said prorogation of parliament would be a terrible thing. pic.twitter.com/cQUFvMx1yD
— Phantom Power (@PhantomPower14) August 28, 2019
Morgan, who only last month said she would support John Major’s threat of legal action against shutting down Parliament, has since become Culture Secretary in Boris Johnson’s Cabinet – another senior Tory who appears to have conveniently misplaced their principles.
Tory MP Nicky Morgan tells @PaulBrandITV she’d support legal action against the prorogation of Parliament, if it was a way to avoid crashing out the EU, in the latest episode of #ActingPM
📺 https://t.co/JjtD85iiYT pic.twitter.com/mAxTE6UbCb
— ITV News (@itvnews) July 10, 2019