‘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.

Matt Hancock

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.

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“.

Amber Rudd

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“.

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“.

Sajid Javid

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.

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”.

Michael Gove

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“.

Nicky Morgan

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.