Brexit Query Answered!

It's later than you think.Kevin Drum

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Why bother passing a law that requires a two-thirds majority to call a new parliamentary election when any future parliament can just pass a law (with a simple majority) negating the requirement and calling a new election whenever it wants?

That was today’s question for Brits, and the answer turns out to be: random politics. Back in 2011 the Conservative Party won an election but didn’t have a majority. They teamed up with the Liberal Democrats to form a government, but the Lib-Dems insisted on the two-thirds law as a condition of supporting the coalition. Why? Because they wanted a full five-year term. The new law prevented the prime minister from calling an election the first time the polls looked good and he thought he might be able to win a majority on his own.

In other words, it was always meant as a short-term solution to an immediate partisan problem, not a permanent change to the constitutional workings of the country. This is why no one cares much that Boris Johnson is bypassing it now with a new law passed by a simple majority.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

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