Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

Theresa May asks public to trust her decision on snap poll

Members of the British Parliament are widely expected on Wednesday to approve Prime Minister Theresa May's plan to hold an early general election on June 8.

The House of Commons voted by 522 to 13 to hold a general election on 8 June - plunging Britain back into political uncertainty just weeks before the start of negotiations on leaving the European Union.

"I believe that at this moment of enormous national significance, there should be unity here in Westminster, not division", May told the parliament.

May dismissed criticism of her move to send voters back to polling booths for the third time in two years, after a May 2015 national election and a June 2016 referendum on European Union membership. If the election becomes a proxy referendum on Brexit, the Conservative's poll lead could suffer.

And he will promise that, if elected prime minister, he will not "doff his cap" to the rich and powerful or "play by the rules" set by the establishment elite.

Elections are to be held in England for directly elected mayors in six devolved new super-regions plus two existing councils.

The European Union, meanwhile, said it will stick to a timetable for preparing to launch Brexit negotiations with the United Kingdom despite the early general election.

Unsurprisingly, Tory voters were the most supportive, with 66% backing the Prime Minister, compared with just 53% of Labour and 54% of Liberal Democrat voters.

The election would enable the parties to "make our respective cases to the country and then to respect the result and the mandate it provides to give Britain the strongest possible hand in the negotiations to come".

"If the negotiations were coming to a conclusion with a few months to go before a general election our European partners would see that as a sign of weakness and use it to push for concessions".

The total number of seats up for election is slightly down from the 4,871 seats now held to 4,851 seats as a result of boundary changes at some councils.

She told The Sun she chose to reverse earlier pledges not to go to the country early because she wanted to be able to go into Brexit negotiations with the "backing of the British people" as her "very clear mandate". "It's about ... getting the right deal from Europe".

But Labour MP Gisela Stuart, one of the architects of Brexit as co-chair of Vote Leave, said she would be standing down after 20 years as MP for Birmingham Edgbaston.

Meanwhile, the prime minister is likely to have a stronger hand at home: opinion polls suggest the election will hand May a bigger parliamentary majority. "And Labour in this election will be part of a movement of the British people to make that change".

As Britain enters an extremely important period in its political future, various MPs assembled this afternoon to discuss and debate the Prime Minister's recent decision to call a snap election.

"She expects a coronation and not a contest", Farron said, urging voters to back his strongly pro-EU party to stop a Conservative landslide.

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