Queen's Speech dismissed as 'pre-election stunt' by Labour

Yeoman warders take part in the traditional Ceremonial Search ceremony ahead of the official State Opening of Parliament in London Monday Oct. 14 2019

Brexit talks face uphill struggle as deadline looms

She added: "To me it's obvious that we shouldn't be talking about some interesting but unworkable pieces of legislation, in all honesty what we should be talking about here and what should be on the front page of the Queen's Speech is a confirmatory referendum so that we can find a way of bringing all this to an end".

But the spectacle, complete with a Household Cavalry equestrian escort, lords in scarlet robes and jewels galore, did provide a day's diversion from the long Brexit grind.

But Labour has said it would only support an election once Johnson's threat of leaving the European Union without a deal on October 31 is removed.

Boris Johnson, who has yet to win a vote in the House of Commons as Prime Minister, has to get the support of nearly all the 28 Conservative MPs who voted against Theresa May's agreement if he manages to bring an agreement back from the European Union, together with support from the DUP. Across the Channel, Britain dragged out a horse-drawn carriage and a diamond-encrusted crown so the queen could read out the government's post-Brexit plans to Parliament.

It remains to be seen whether Johnson will achieve that goal.

The prime minister has challenged opposition parties to face him at a general election, although Labour has said it does not want one until a no-deal Brexit has been ruled out.

The EU has said that talks have been productive after a breakthrough between Irish taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Mr Johnson at a private meeting near Liverpool last week.

French President Emmanuel Macron meets European Council President Donald Tusk in Paris.

The speech and accompanying notes set out an overview of more than 20 bills, including the legislation that is required to implement a Brexit deal - if Johnson is able to reach agreement with the European Union this week. "There is momentum but there is still little movement".




Arriving for a meeting in Luxembourg, Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said "the less we say now, the better". May be possible this week.

The government's opponents have dismissed it as a "stunt" geared more to a forthcoming election campaign than an actual legislative plan, given Johnson's lack of a parliamentary majority.

Jeremy Corbyn has accused Boris Johnson of presiding over a "farce" by unveiling a Queen's Speech which "cannot be delivered" in this Parliament.

The speech was part of the State Opening of Parliament, a ceremony steeped in centuries-old symbolism of the power struggle between Parliament and the British monarchy.

The winning government would then have to set out their legislative agenda again - with a new queen's speech. That is even more the case today.

The speech, written for the monarch by government officials, gives a brisk rundown of more than 20 laws Prime Minister Boris Johnson's administration hopes to pass in the coming months.

The challenge of maintaining an invisible border on the island of Ireland - something that underpins both the local economy and the region's peace deal - has dominated Brexit discussions for three years since United Kingdom voters chose in 2016 to leave the EU. Many British lawmakers - on both pro-Brexit and pro-EU sides of the debate - remain unconvinced.

"There has never been such a farce as a government with a majority of minus 45 and a 100 percent record of defeat in the Commons setting out a legislative agenda they know can not be delivered in this Parliament", said Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the opposition Labour Party, during a raucous debate later in the day.

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