UK to double length of next Parliament to deal with Brexit


The two-year session will mean that the Government will not face a crunch vote next spring, when Brexit negotiations - which get underway tomorrow - will be ongoing.

In a rare move, the United Kingdom government today announced the cancellation of the Queen's Speech for 2018 to give Parliament more time to push through controversial Brexit laws after Prime Minister Theresa May's election debacle.

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

Talks with the DUP on a deal to shore up a minority Conservative administration are "progressing well" and the parties have reached "broad agreement" on the principles of the Speech, which will set out the Government's legislative programme for the coming year, according to a senior Conservative source.

In a statement this morning, Andrea Leadsom confirmed that the State Opening would be postponed by two days due to a delay with the making of The Queen's Speech.

The prime minister was meeting separately with representatives of Sinn Fein, the Ulster Unionists, the SDLP and the Alliance Party, as well as the DUP, in Downing Street in an attempt to allay growing concerns.

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".

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"My Government remains absolutely committed to doing everything we can to help take this process to a successful conclusion, remaining steadfast to our commitments in the Belfast Agreement and its successors", she said.

The Queen's Speech will be cancelled next year, for only the second time in recent history.

Labour accused the coalition at the time of an "abuse of power" and said it was aimed exclusively at easing the passage of controversial legislation.

The speech will include the so-called Great Repeal Bill, which will move European law into British legislation, along with other Brexit bills on customs and immigration arrangements.

Among those laws is the Great Repeal Bill, which aims to scrap the European Communities Act from 1972 that officially took Britain into the EU and transfer EU law onto the U.K.'s statute books.

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