Boris Johnson Calls For December Election To Solve Brexit Chaos
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says the only way to break the Brexit impasse is a general election, and he will ask parliament to approve a national poll for December 12.
Johnson says he will ask MPs to vote on Monday on a motion calling for an early election.
Johnson has been mulling his next move since Tuesday, when MPs blocked his attempt to fast-track an EU divorce bill through parliament in a matter of days.
MPs said they needed more time to scrutinise the legislation, making it all but impossible for Britain to leave the EU on the scheduled date of October 31 with a deal.
The British government has been awaiting the EU's decision on whether to postpone the UK's departure to prevent a chaotic no-deal exit.
The request for a delay until January 31 was ordered by Britain's parliament to avert the economic damage that could come from a no-deal exit.
Though the EU has not given its answer, Johnson said it looked like the EU would grant the extension - and with it kill off Johnson's oft-repeated promise that Britain will leave the EU at the end of this month.
"I'm afraid it looks as though our EU friends are going to respond to parliament's request by having an extension, which I really don't want at all," Johnson said.
Britain's next scheduled election is in 2022. If Johnson wants an early election, he needs to win a vote in parliament by a two-thirds majority, or lose a no-confidence vote, which so far opposition parties have refused to call.
The main opposition Labour Party has said it would "support a general election when the threat of a no-deal crash-out is off the table".
European Council President Donald Tusk has recommended that the other 27 EU nations grant Britain a delay, yet many of the bloc's members are weary and frustrated at Britain's interminable Brexit melodrama.
But they also want to avoid the economic pain that would come to both sides from a sudden and disruptive British exit.
So they are likely to agree, although politicians in France say President Emmanuel Macron is pushing for a shorter extension than the three months that Britain has asked for.
Johnson has vowed that, sooner or later, the UK will leave the EU on the terms of the deal he negotiated with the bloc.
He said the December 12 election date would give MPs more time to scrutinise his bill, because parliament would be in session until the formal campaign started on November 6.
"So, the way to get this done, the way to get Brexit done, is, I think, to be reasonable with parliament and say if they genuinely want more time to study this excellent deal they can have it, but they have to agree to a general election on December 12," Johnson said.