A blow for Johnson: prorogation null and void

The judges of the UK's Supreme Court have ruled unanimously that Prime Minister Boris Johnson's prorogation of parliament was unlawful. A bitter blow for Johnson, who had argued that he needed the prorogation to have time to prepare a government policy statement, known as the Queen's Speech. Will the ruling bring clarity to the confused political situation?

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The Daily Telegraph (GB) /

PM just trying to enforce the people's will

In this particular case the end justified the means, The Daily Telegraph writes in defence of the prime minister:

“The normal laws of political gravity have been suspended by the referendum and by the failure of Parliament to enact the decision taken more than three years ago. Mr Johnson took office promising to bring this to a conclusion one way or the other by the end of next month. All those opposed to leaving the EU are doing everything they can to stop him. But the country can see what is going on here. They know Mr Johnson is trying to bring about what the majority voted for and is being thwarted at every turn.”

Sydsvenskan (SE) /

Not a man to buy a used car from

Johnson has now been definitively exposed as a liar, Sydsvenskan stresses:

“Ever since he took office he has tried to convey the impression that his government is successfully conducting negotiations for a new, better withdrawal agreement. Even before the supreme court ruling, few people other than his most loyal supporters believed this - and now it is even fewer. Boris Johnson has made it crystal clear that his word can't be relied on and that he is willing to disregard principles and laws to impose his will. He is a man you wouldn't buy a used car from, let alone entrusting him with leading a country.”

Die Presse (AT) /

British didn't vote for breaking the law

Johnson's defeat at the Supreme Court highlights how he and his supporters are victims of a double misconception, Die Presse says:

“Yes, a majority of the population gave the government a mandate to get the UK out of the EU. But it is a big misunderstanding that this referendum decision legitimised the suspension of representative democracy, the breaking of the law, or running the risk of economic chaos. The British voted by a narrow majority of 52 percent in favour of leaving the EU; they did not vote for a disorderly Brexit. The other big misconception pertains to a prime minister's responsibilities towards society as a whole. Johnson must respect the majority of EU opponents. But he is also responsible for the 48 percent who voted to remain in the EU in 2016.”

Jutarnji list (HR) /

Paradoxical chaos

Although the judgement shows that the democratic institutions in the UK are alive and kicking a blockade is stopping progress, Jutarnji list concludes:

“The bizarre thing is that all this chaos is a legitimate development in a democratic system. Every institution is doing its job and the chaos continues. The prime minister is trying to enforce his policy, the parliament is playing its role and the judiciary too. All three institutions of the United Kingdom are independent. The separation of powers has worked perfectly so far. But there is still no answer to the question of what will happen after October 31.”