Britain: Boris Johnson Loses Bid To Force Snap Election

The Guardian reports:

Boris Johnson’s bid to trigger a general election next month has been blocked by MPs following a string of heavy defeats for the government in both houses of parliament. Immediately afterwards, the prime minister called Jeremy Corbyn, “the first leader of the opposition in the democratic history of our country to refuse the invitation to an election”.

But an early poll seemed increasingly likely after the Labour leader signalled that he would back Johnson’s call for a snap poll, but only once the bill opposing a no-deal Brexit bill has passed. The vote came just 48 hours after the prime minister told the public, “I don’t want an election, you don’t want an election”.

The BBC reports:

Mr Johnson wanted MPs to agree to an early general election on 15 October, saying the bill – which forces him to ask for an extension to the Brexit deadline if no deal had been agreed – left him unable to negotiate a deal. He needed two thirds of all MPs to vote in favour under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, but the result only saw 298 vote for the motion and 56 against – 136 short of the number he needed.

Labour sources told the BBC the party abstained on the vote, although three MPs appeared to have voted for it and 28 against. The SNP also abstained. The bill to block no deal passed all its stages in the Commons in one day, with the support of most opposition parties and 21 Tory rebels, as they tried to push it through ahead of Parliament being suspended next week. It will now go to the Lords for approval.