'The day UK democracy died': Protests erupt after Boris Johnson suspends parliament

'The day UK democracy died': Protests erupt after Boris Johnson suspends parliament
President Donald J. Trump and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson continue to talk at the conclusion of their working breakfast meeting Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019, at Hotel du Palais Biarritz in Biarritz, France, site of the G7 Summit. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

On Wednesday, Boris Johnson took the extraordinary step of “proroguing” parliament for over a month, delaying the beginning of debate on the next step in the Brexit process until just two weeks before the U.K. will face tumbling out of the European Union without a deal to soften the results. For some in Johnson’s party, this has been the goal all along. But the maneuver he took to forestall any possibility of finding a solution—or voting out his government in time to seat someone else—is not going down well.

The First Minister of Scotland called it “the day UK democracy died.” The Scottish leader of the conservatives has vowed to leave the party. Prominent MP John McDonnell tagged it “a very British coup.” They, along with many others, warned that the country’s unwritten constitution was being strained to the breaking point, and that Johnson was treading very close to a dictatorship. MPs of both parties have signed onto the Church House declaration, promising to form an “alternative parliament,” though what action they may take is unclear.

Over the course of the day, protesters have taken to the streets in cities across the U.K. chanting, “Stop Brexit! Stop the coup!” And resistance groups are calling for more.

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