Prorogue again?

The move has been described as "pure Dick Dastardly"

The Times

No 10 rejects second Commons suspension

Downing Street has moved to close down speculation that Boris Johnson could suspend parliament for a second time in order to avoid asking Brussels for another Brexit extension.

Dominic Cummings, the prime minister's adviser, floated the possibility of a second prorogation at a meeting of special advisers on Friday.

One source said that he was explaining what could happen if the Supreme Court ruled tomorrow that the first suspension was unlawful.

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Could the government prorogue parliament all over again?

By Joe Harker

Parliament is currently prorogued until October 14, whereupon it will reopen with a Queen's Speech setting out the government's new agenda.

A majority of MPs oppose the prorogation, arguing that suspending parliament for several weeks while the Brexit deadline of October 31 looms was a move to dodge parliamentary scrutiny.

Once the House of Commons reconvenes for the new session the suggestion of another prorogation has been floated.

The Claim:

Justice secretary Robert Buckland was asked about the chances of a second prorogation and refused to rule out the possibility.

The idea has reportedly come from Dominic Cummings, special advisor to prime minister Boris Johnson.

It had been mooted as a potential suggestion for a way Johnson could circumvent the law requiring him to ask the EU for an extension to Article 50 and agree to one they offer if he hasn't secured a Brexit deal by October 19.

The prime minister has repeatedly promised to get the UK out of the EU "do or die" on the deadline but doubts over his ability to get a deal or pass it through parliament has him on a collision course with the law.

A refusal from the justice secretary to deny the possibility has many concerned about the chances of a second prorogation to keep parliament out of the Commons while Johnson tries to find a way around the law.

The Counter Claim:

However, Downing Street has tried to calm the suggestion that they would attempt a second prorogation.

The Times reports pro-Remain Tory MPs are unhappy at the prospect of a second prorogation,

One MP described the idea as "pure Dick Dastardly", citing the Wacky Races character who always tried to win by cheating and had an exceedingly appropriate name.

It may also have been a warning, as Dick Dastardly's attempts to cheat often cost him a victory he might otherwise have secured.

With the public already opposing prorogation, another one for even more blatantly political reasons would be even more unpopular.

The Facts:

ITV's Robert Peston has said Johnson might not ask the Queen to summon MPs and Lords back to parliament even if prorogation is ruled unlawful by the Supreme Court.

The matter is currently being considered in the UK's highest court after the Court of Session in Scotland ruled Johnson's prorogation and advice to the Queen was unlawful.

The prime minister has promised to abide by the ruling of the court but Peston has explained that he could still try and stop politicians from returning to parliament or ask the Queen to approve a second prorogation.

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