Commons block second election attempt

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Boris Johnson has lost his second attempt to trigger an early general election in his sixth humiliating Commons defeat since becoming prime minister.

Ahead of parliament being suspended by the government for five weeks, MPs opposed to a no-deal Brexit again deprived the prime minister of the required votes for an early poll in the last major showdown of the current session.

Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, the government must achieve a two-thirds majority to authorise an early general election.

MPs voted by 293 to 47 in favour of the motion, but Mr Johnson failed in reaching the required threshold to trigger an election.

It means there will be no public vote in early October, as MPs will not return to the Commons for another five weeks due to Mr Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament on Monday evening.

Jeremy Corbyn accused the PM of “running away” from scrutiny over Brexit. Corbyn said Labour is “eager” for an election, but won’t risk “inflicting the disaster” of a no-deal Brexit on the UK in the process.

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson confirmed that the Lib Dems will stand at the next election on the promise of cancelling Brexit – by revoking Article 50 – if they are voted into government.

She told the PM he can have an election as soon as he secures a fresh delay to Brexit, by extending the Article 50 period.

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