订阅

多平台阅读

微信订阅

杂志

申请纸刊赠阅

订阅每日电邮

移动应用

领导力

英国新首相把女王和脱欧绑在了一起,可谓史无前例

Katherine Dunn 2019年09月08日

约翰逊的这一步很不平常,肯定引起巨大争议。

现在,我们进入了《王冠》的最终季。

8月28日上午,英国首相鲍里斯·约翰逊请求伊丽莎白二世女王下令议会休会。这是一项“皇家特权”,也是约翰逊为更紧密地控制英国脱欧进程所采取的最新措施。到目前为止,此项请求是女王最接近脱欧泥潭的一步。

当日下午,女王在巴尔莫拉城堡,也就是她在苏格兰高地的夏日行宫,批准了此项请求。

约翰逊的这一步很不平常,这样做会引起巨大争议。休会意味着议会彻底停止辩论和投票,从而将正在进行的立法活动基本清零。议会重开后,未通过的提案一般都必须重头再来。作为脱欧强硬派,约翰逊祭出此招的目的是阻挠议会,而后者希望避免无协议脱欧,或者说避免英国在10月底脱欧时可能制定出寥寥无几的方案,甚至没有方案。

出于政治原因让议会休会的情况极为反常,但也不是从未出现过。上次英国发生这样的局面是在1948年,当时出现了政治危机,政府想推翻议会上院的决定。更近的一次情况则出现和英国政体相似的加拿大,时间是2008年。加拿大总督,或者说英国女王在加拿大的代表,最终同意了加拿大总理的议会休会请求,目的是防止政府解体及随后进行大选。此举引发了强烈抗议,也让总督的角色受到了质疑。

此前女王一直竭力置身于英国政治之外,约翰逊却将自己倾向明显的策略放在了女王手中,这颇具讽刺意味。今年1月,女王曾经在讲话中敦促英国人采用“经过检验的”方法,尊重不同的观点,找到共同之处,而且“绝不要忽略大局”。这些话立即被解读为呼吁停止政治纷争,并终结2016年脱欧公投后英国政界犹豫不决状态。

但尽管想方设法避开政治重担,女王的身份仍然意味着她可以决定众多政府事务。比如,选出新一届政府后,她要批准其“成立”。

那么,女王在当前情况下有可能跟约翰逊站在一起吗?传统决定了女王一般都会遵循首相的建议,原因是后者被视为民众意愿的代表。女王或许会对首相提出建议或警告,但实际上从未出现过她否决首相计划的情况。就这样,约翰逊的提议使女王陷入前所未有的困境,从而迫使她做出选择——要么违反皇家协定,要么批准约翰逊的请求,而批评约翰逊的人已经将此举称为公然抢夺权力和违背英国的民主精神。

现在,约翰逊当下的措施将让议会休会23个工作日,从而缩短了后者的准备时间——10月底脱欧前英国将和欧盟进行一次关键会议。议会运作周期被压缩后,议员们需要在更短的时间里找到避免英国无协议脱欧的办法。(财富中文网)

译者:Charlie

审校:夏林

At this point, we’re in final season of The Crown territory.

On August 28 morning, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson asked Queen Elizabeth II to suspend the U.K. Parliament—a process that is a “"Royal Pregrogative” power—in his latest effort to more closely control how the U.K. leaves the European Union. The request is so far the closest the monarch has come to getting stuck in the Brexit quagmire.

On Wednesday afternoon, the Queen approved the suspension from Balmoral Castle, her summer home in the highlands of Scotland.

Johnson’s move is extraordinary because it is so incendiary. Suspending Parliament means debating and voting in Parliament completely stops, and it largely wipes clean ongoing legislative activity. Unpassed measures must be typically restarted from scratch when the next session begins. Johnson, a pro-Brexit hardliner, is pulling this lever in a bid to frustrate legislation aimed at avoiding a no-deal Brexit or the possibility the U.K. will crash out of the EU at the end of October with few, if any, plans in place.

Suspending Parliament for political reasons is extremely unusual but not completely unheard of. It last happened in 1948, during a political crisis in which the U.K. government attempted to overrule the House of Lords, the U.K.’s upper house. A more comparable case occurred in 2008 in Canada, which has a U.K.-style political system. The Governor General, the Queen’s representative in Canada, ultimately agreed to the prime minister’s request to suspend Parliament, a move that was intended to prevent his government from falling, which would have triggered an election. The move drew outcry, including raising questions about the Governor General’s role.

That Johnson’s partisan gamesmanship was put in the hands of the Queen is ironic given her herculean efforts to stay out of U.K. politics. In January, she made a speech urging Britons to look to the “tried and true” methods of respecting different points of view, finding common ground, and “never losing sight of the bigger picture.” Those were immediately interpreted as a plea to end the political bickering and indecision that has dominated British politics since the vote to leave the EU in 2016.

But for all of her attempts to avoid political albatrosses, the Queen, by definition, holds sway over a wide range of government actions. When a new government is elected, for instance, she approves its “forming.”

So, was she likely to side with Johnson in this instance? Tradition dictates that the Queen typically follows the advice of the prime minister, since he or she is seen as representing the will of the people. The Queen may advise or warn a leader, but it is essentially unheard of for her to reject the agenda of the U.K.’s head of government. Johnson’s request, therefore, put the Queen in an unprecedented bind, having to choose between rejecting royal protocol or approving what Johnson’s critics say is a blatant power grab that defies the spirit of British democracy.

At present, Johnson’s current plan would suspend Parliament for 23 working days, reducing the lead-up to a crucial meeting with the EU ahead of the October 31 deadline for the U.K. to leave the EU. The abbreviated schedule would give MPs a shorter time frame to figure out how to avoid a no-deal Brexit.

我来点评

  最新文章

最新文章:

500强情报中心

财富专栏