Politics

138: The Blame Game

A week of incredible statements, threats and insults ends with the vaguest glimmer of hope that perhaps a no-deal Brexit can be agreed. But will we even be on speaking terms with the EU by the end of this process?

We look back at a week that saw Downing Street hurl abuse at Berlin, Brussels and Dublin, all part of the strategy to spread the blame for a potential no-deal as wide as possible, and as far away from Number 10 as they can manage.

Can Team Boris pull it off? Can the rag-tag of parties opposing him work together? What happens if we run out of toilet paper, apparently a serious prospect... and why is dogging a peculiarly British pastime that might be about to get a boost.

136: Be you ever so mighty...

Boris Johnson continues his extraordinary losing streak, going from the Commons to the courts. The Supreme Court rules the Prime Minister broke the law when he suspended Parliament.

Johnson is judged by the country’s highest court to have lied to the Queen, to Parliament and the public. But there is no apology, only more powerless bluster as the Prime Minister again begs his enemies to grant him the election he desperately craves.

We work our way through the week the constitutional crisis got even bigger, and try to find a way through the mess.

Plus how Labour’s conferences endorses its inexplicable Brexit stance, and focuses on the real enemy — Tom Watson.

135: Riding the Yellow Wave

Boris Johnson is busy hiding from booing crowds and angry voters, but his rivals dream of glory. The Liberal Democrats have a bold new policy on Brexit — pledging to scrap it without another referendum. But will it accidentally mean more pro-Brexit Tory MPs get elected.

Labour, meanwhile, sets out its latest policy on Brexit, still refusing to come off that fence.

Plus what Podiumgate reveals about Boris Johnson’s desperate desire to be loved, and how he’s knocked sideways when he bumps into angry voters.

And as David Cameron’s memoirs are published, we’re reeling from the astonishing revelations that Brexit turned out to be quite divisive. The Queen, meanwhile, is not amused.

134: Boris Johnson: Extraordinary Achievements in Winning

Let’s pause in honour of Boris Johnson’s extraordinary achievements in winning. He’s winning the race to be the least successful Prime Minister in history — winning the battle to lose more Commons votes than any of his predecessors, winning the battle to reduce his party to previously unknown numbers in Parliament, and winning the battle to be hauled in front of as many different courts as possible.

Another torrid week for the Prime Minister ends with him having to deny lying to the Queen, his secret no-deal risk assessments made public, his hopes of a snap election in tatters.

But it’s not going well for Labour either — the party now appears to have three directly contradictory Brexit policies, which is definitely two more than any party needs.

Plus we say bye bye to short-tempered John Bercow, as the Speaker confirms he’ll step down.

And Theresa May hands out rewards for failure among her advisers, which is bound to take ages.

133: The Week That Broke Britain

What a difference a week makes. Boris Johnson seemed invincible, Parliament tamed, a no-deal Brexit looking more and more likely. Then the Commons took back control.

In just one day the Prime Minister saw MPs block a no-deal Brexit at the end of October, and an election within weeks.

It’s far from over, but it’s not been a good week for Boris Johnson.

Paul Osbourne and Robert Meakin talk through the hectic events of the past few days, and try to figure out what might happen next.

Can Jeremy Corbyn avoid falling into the Marty McFly trap? Can Boris Johnson avoid becoming Britain’s shortest-serving prime minister?