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Day of Commons drama ends with Prime Minister Boris Johnson's general election bid failing for second time

MPs win bid to force government to publish no deal docs

Jonathan Bell

By Jonathan Bell

Boris Johnson's second attempt to call a general election has failed.

Although 293 MPs voted in favour, with 46 against, it was short of the 434 needed for an election to be called in an early morning Commons vote.

It was Boris Johnson's seventh straight defeat in the Commons since becoming Prime Minister. He has now lost more votes in parliament then Tony Blair did in his entire 10 years as PM.

Following the result the Prime Minister said he would strive to broker a deal with the EU but said he would not delay Brexit any further.

He accused the opposition of running from their duties to the electorate to have a vote.

The vote was the final substantive action for parliament ahead of a five-week prorogation.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said the lengthly suspension was for the Prime Minister to avoid scrutiny over his Brexit plans and he would not walk into "traps laid by this Prime Minister" in allowing a general election.

He called on Mr Johnson to reflect on his decision to suspend parliament.

The PM insisted he would not ask for another Brexit delay, despite royal assent being given to legislation requiring a delay to Brexit beyond October 31 unless a divorce deal is approved or Parliament agrees to leaving the EU without one.

Mr Johnson said: "It's plain from the turbulent reaction of the benches opposite that they simply want another delay and I will not have that.

"I must warn members that their behaviour in thwarting the will of the people is undermining respect for this House in the country.

"If honourable members want a delay, the only proper way to do it is to ask permission from our masters the people, from our masters the voters."

Earlier and in a day of drama, MPs voted for the disclosure of government advisers' private messages on Brexit and a Jeremy Corbyn motion for the government to comply with the rule of law passed.

However, debates on Northern Ireland matters were cut short due to the change in business. The matters had been tabled to prevent an early suspension of parliament.

Speaker John Bercow also announced he was to stand down by October 31 at the latest.

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