To Brexit During General Election Period Would Be "Fraudulent", Says Sir Malcolm Rifkind
10 August 2019, 18:35 | Updated: 10 August 2019, 18:41
Former Conservative Foreign Secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind tells LBC a general election at the end of October would be "an abuse of our constitution" and will deny the public the last word.
Speaking to Clive Bull, the former Conservative politician described the prospect of leaving the European Union at the same time as holding a general election as "fraudulent" and an "abuse of our constitution".
"What would be absurd would be to call a general election but so arrange the date to be after October 31st so that the electorate would actually be denied any opportunity to have the last word.
"That would be fraudulent and unacceptable," he added.
But asked by Clive whether it would be better to skip the general election and instead "plough on" with no-deal Brexit regardless, Sir Malcolm said: "That is an option, but the problem [Boris Johnson] faces is that once it becomes clear he's not getting the concessions he wishes from the EU, the Labour Party will put down a motion of no confidence and because the government has no majority it's likely to lose that motion.
"That means you either have to get a new government immediately formed within the next 14 days, or if that proves impossible then you have a general election."
It comes as MPs float the idea of supporting a vote of no confidence against the government next month as a method to prevent the UK leaving the European Union without a deal.
But Prime Minister Boris Johnson is said to be considering calling for a general election for after October 31st, leaving the UK to Brexit automatically because under Article 50 it is the UK's exit date by default - unless a deal is passed by MPs or a government asks for delay or revocation.