Brexit: MPs plot rebellion in parliament against Boris Johnson — latest news
Curious to know how Johnson might trigger an election?
Here’s a Q&A from Sebastian Payne and Edwin Esosa:
Will the prime minister call a general election?
Boris Johnson on Monday said he still wanted to secure a new exit deal, but insisted that Britain’s chances of getting one hinged on convincing EU leaders that it was serious about leaving without one, “no ifs or buts”.
The prime minister and his closest advisers do not want to let parliament — or those MPs against a no-deal Brexit, who include former Conservative ministers such as David Gauke and ex-chancellor Philip Hammond — undermine their strategy.
While there is no inclination for an election, insiders think it may be preferable to losing control of events.
How might an election be triggered?
Government officials have said that, if MPs seize control of Brexit, Mr Johnson would immediately seek to dissolve parliament through the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, which governs elections in the UK.
Such a move would require a “supermajority” of two-thirds of MPs to automatically trigger an election.
It is far from a given that Mr Johnson can win this majority in light of opposition scepticism over his motives.
This would put the onus on Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the opposition Labour party, to support an election, as well as the Liberal Democrats, Scottish and Welsh nationalists.
The Tory party would be split, with MPs opposed to a no-deal exit torn between an election campaign they might lose and avoiding crashing out of the bloc.
In the event of such a motion, the government would be likely to whip Tory MPs to support a dissolution.