Brexit: What is it, and where is it going? The answer: a wild nightmare, and straight to hell! Every day in Brexit-town brings a greater amount of lunacy than the last, but Tuesday is shaping up to be especially unhinged, featuring parliamentary intrigue, Boris Johnson humiliation, and an extreme amount of random shouting. Here, as briefly as I possibly can, is what’s happening right now.
Johnson, the awful prime minister of a nervous breakdown formerly called “the United Kingdom,” is determined to leave the European Union on Oct. 31, with or without a deal. Many do not want him to do this, and are resorting to ever-more-baroque methods to prevent a no-deal Brexit. (No deal would be very bad, according to basically anyone who looks at it.)
This week, members of Parliament opposed to Brexit are attempting to seize control of legislative business from the government and pass a law ordering Johnson to seek an extension of Brexit beyond Halloween from the EU. Johnson has responded by vowing never to seek an extension and by threatening to excommunicate any members of his own party who vote to do this, and by also threatening to pursue an election to prevent him from having to seek such an extension. It’s all very crazy.
Well, on Tuesday, things got even crazier, because, right when Johnson was giving a speech in Parliament and shouting about how it would be a betrayal and a surrender and a deal with Satan himself to vote against him, one of his own MPs literally abandoned him, on camera, and defected to another party. What’s worse for Johnson, by doing so, the MP, Philip Lee, robbed Johnson of his majority in Parliament, meaning he is effectively operating a minority government. Again, this happened on camera in front of Boris Johnson in real time. Incredible.
Apparently, this was all good news for the pound, LOL.
Then Johnson had to continue making his pitch while people yelled at him. All quite nice to watch.
Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn reveled in Johnson’s discomfort.
So what is going to happen now?
Most observers seem to think that the anti-Johnson forces will win their battle to impose a Brexit extension on him against his will. The government has been clear that, under those circumstances, it will seek an election. Will any of that happen? Who the fuck knows!!! But an election seems more and more like an inevitability with each passing hour.
Update, 5:18 p.m. ET: It’s all kicking off!
Re: that last tweet—two-thirds of MPs have to vote for an election to trigger one, so if Labour votes against one, it ain’t happening. Whew!