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In this episode, Cambridge University Professors Helen Thompson and Kenneth Armstrong share their views on the Johnson government’s cases for prorogation. Both argued that the call for prorogation tested the effectiveness of ‘checks and balances’ within the British government as it demonstrated how the executive and the legislature may limit the power of each other. Thompson saw this series of attempts from the Johnson government as an effort to exit the EU in an orderly fashion, and suggests that the public was dubious about Johnson’s promise of actually getting a deal. Both professors also recognized that despite constant arguments over a new general election, there was a lack of consensus among the opposing forces in parliament. As such the current government is unable to achieve its political agenda, but an effective replacement of the current government is not a viable option in the short run either. With everyone trying to tie each other’s hands, neither professor is hopeful that anything constructive will be done.
Why does this matter? A dramatic week in UK politics has skewed near-term risks for the pound to the upside with evidence that we might avoid a no-deal Brexit on 31 October. A possible three-month delay is offering further relief to sterling across the board. However, another defeat for Johnson this morning is adding more question marks.
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