Protests planned as PM’s Brexit plan faces opposition
Protests against Boris Johnson's Brexit stance are to be held as the Prime Minister faces cross-party opposition to his EU withdrawal moves.
Demonstrators opposed to Brexit have planned more than 30 events across the UK this weekend as Mr Johnson looked set for a torrid week in the Commons.
As Mr Johnson faces Parliamentary attempts to try and legislate against a no-deal exit from the EU, or hold a vote of confidence in his Government, the PM insisted opponents could be making the prospect of a withdrawal from the bloc without an agreement more likely.
Mr Johnson's remarks came as a Tory predecessor in Number 10, Sir John Major, announced he wanted to join a legal challenge to the PM's decision to extend the suspension of Parliament over the annual party conference season.
Sir John suggested his experience in Downing Street could assist the High Court in deciding whether Mr Johnson's actions in proroguing Parliament are lawful.
Deputy Labour leader Tom Watson said he was also joining the legal action against what he called "an unprecedented affront to democracy".
But Mr Johnson defended his decision and warned efforts to frustrate Brexit on October 31 would be seized on by Brussels to avoid offering a good deal.
"I'm afraid that the more our friends and partners think, at the back of their mind, that Brexit could be stopped, that the UK could be kept in by Parliament, the less likely they are to give us the deal that we need," he said.
Businesswoman Gina Miller – who previously took the Government to court over the triggering of Article 50 to start the Brexit process – said her case would be heard on September 5.
Shadow attorney general Shami Chakrabarti said she has been granted permission to intervene in the judicial review, as she accused the Government of operating from a "far-right play book".
Baroness Chakrabarti said: "I am grateful to the High Court for granting me permission to intervene in these important proceedings on behalf of the official opposition.
"Parliamentary sovereignty remains the foremost and overarching principle of our constitution.
"Whatever far-right play-book Number 10 may be copying from, the abusive shutdown of our legislature won't wash under United Kingdom constitutional law."
In a separate legal case in Scotland, judge Lord Doherty rejected a call for an interim interdict to block the suspension of Parliament, but said a full hearing would take place on Tuesday.