Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament is a political issue and not a matter for judges, a lawyer for the prime minister said as he sought to persuade the British Supreme Court that the five-week shutdown was lawful.
Johnson asked Queen Elizabeth to prorogue, or suspend, parliament from Sept. 10 until Oct. 14, prompting accusations from opponents that he wanted to silence the legislature in the run-up to Britain’s exit from the European Union on Oct. 31.
The Supreme Court, Britain’s top judicial body, began three days of hearings on Tuesday to decide whether Johnson’s advice to the queen regarding the suspension was unlawful.
A ruling against him would be a major embarrassment for Johnson, who has no majority in parliament, and could see lawmakers returning early, with more time to try to influence his Brexit plans.
James Eadie, a lawyer for Johnson, told the court he would produce a written document on Thursday outlining what Johnson would do if he lost.
Another government lawyer said on Tuesday that if Johnson lost the case, he could recall parliament earlier than planned.