Tony Blair warns UK Labour: Don't fall into election 'elephant trap'

British PM Boris Johnson is reflected in a mirror as he answers questions from children during education announcement inside Downing Street in London

Johnson decried parliamentary action set for Tuesday that is meant to delay Britain's departure from the European Union, arguing that it would "chop the legs" out of the United Kingdom position.

He then called an emergency meeting of his ministers to discuss what to do if, as expected, lawmakers vote on Tuesday to start legislating against a "no deal" Brexit.

Johnson says he wants a deal with the European Union to ease Britain's departure from the bloc after 46 years of membership, but says if this can not happen, Brexit must still happen as planned next month.

A parliamentary defeat for the government could trigger an election, which media reports have said Johnson is readying for.

J.P. Morgan said in a research note it believed Monday's developments made a no-deal more likely as it increased the chances of an election and opinion polls suggest Johnson could win an election campaigning for a no-deal mandate.

Rebels and opponents of the government say Johnson is betting on an election that he will cast as being forced on him by opponents of Brexit in parliament.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell attend a Labour rally ahead of a shadow cabinet meeting on September 02, 2019 in Salford, England. We are leaving on the 31st of October, no ifs or buts.

Conservative former justice secretary David Gauke accused Johnson of "goading" party members to vote against the government so that they can be ousted in favor of lawmakers who support the prime minister's more extreme version of Brexit.

UK Labour MP Hilary Benn unveiled details on Monday of a "cross-party" bill to stop no-deal Brexit.

According to the BBC, he is planning to introduce a law to force Johnson to seek to delay Brexit until January 1, 2020, unless parliament had approved a divorce deal or accepted a "no deal" Brexit before October 19.

Some of his own party's lawmakers say it was a ruse to limit parliament's options to stop no deal and are willing to vote with the opposition to try to prevent that outcome - even if it leads to a confidence vote that could ultimately bring down the government, which has a tiny majority.

The prime minister said he wanted negotiators to get on with their work "without that sword of Damocles over their necks.And without an election, which I don't want and you don't want". "They seem quite prepared for a rebellion and then to purge those who support the rebellion from the party".

Mr. Johnson has been adamant about the Brexit deadline ever since he became Conservative Party leader and Prime Minister in July.

However, former Labour prime minister Tony Blair warned Corbyn, a veteran socialist, to avoid what he cast as the election "elephant trap" that Johnson had laid for Labour.

Mr Corbyn, however, was quoted as saying over the weekend that the fight to stop a no-deal was not a struggle between those who want to leave the European Union and those who want to stay, but rather a battle "of the many against the few who are hijacking the referendum result".

Jacob Rees-Mogg, the minister responsible for parliamentary business, said any wise party would prepare for an election and that any vote on rebel legislation would be considered a matter of confidence in the government.

After winning the top job in the chaos following the referendum, May bet on a 2017 snap election but lost her majority.



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