UK to double length of next Parliament to deal with Brexit

Posted June 19, 2017

The Queen's Speech, which sets out the government's agenda for the course of the next parliamentary session, was originally due to take place tomorrow, but was moved to Wednesday as the Conservatives continued negotiations with the DUP.

Leader of the Commons, Andrea Leadsom said the move would give MPs and Lords the time needed to scrutinise forthcoming legislation.

It means the Government will not put forward a new legislative programme next year.

Leadsom also refused to accept that the decision had been taken to reduce the number of Queen's speech votes the government had to face in the lifetime of the parliament and said it was purely about getting the work of Brexit and social reforms done.

Tory backbencher Heidi Allen told The Sunday Times the country wanted a "leader and a party that will carry us through this most turbulent of periods but care about the little man".

Each Parliament is usually divided into five parliamentary years called "sessions", beginning and ending in the spring.

The last time a two-year parliament was announced was in 2010, at the formation of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition. That decision, the first time it had been taken since 1949, was criticised at the time by Labour as an "abuse of power" aimed exclusively at easing the passage of controversial legislation.

She said: "Whilst our top priority right now is supporting the victims of the awful tragedy at Grenfell tower, we also need to look ahead by setting out a legislative programme that not only delivers a successful European Union exit but also a domestic agenda which aims to tackle the social injustices in our country".

The Prime Minister will on Wednesday launch a two-year parliamentary session rather than the traditional one-year session, in order to give MPs and peers more time to scrutinise Brexit legislation.

"There's a lot of legislation to be gone through, we're leaving the European Union at the end of March 2019, so having a two-year period in which to bring together parliament and government, to really make progress on legislation that is essential to make a real success of Brexit".