Speaker John Bercow has not selected Tory former attorney general Dominic Grieve’s no-deal Brexit amendment for consideration during the latest stage of the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill.
Grieve’s new clause 14 had sought to keep government in the province running in the absence of the devolved institutions, requiring parliament to come back to the issue in October.
The move was designed to try to ensure the next prime minister cannot push through a no-deal on October 31, the current EU deadline for agreeing on a deal, simply by suspending, or “proroguing”, parliament.
But it was not included in a list of amendments to be considered at committee.
Bercow has selected, among others, new clause one – a cross-party proposal, led by Labour’s Conor McGinn, to require Westminster to legalise same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland if a new Stormont Executive is not formed by October 21 2019.
Grive branded the possible prorogation of parliament to enable a no-deal Brexit the “end of democracy” during earlier interviews.
“The idea that it is constitutionally proper to prorogue parliament as a device for bringing about a no-deal Brexit is outrageous,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. “I have never come across a more extraordinary suggestion.”