United Kingdom lawmakers overwhelmingly vote to support snap electionBy Darlene Powers Apr 21, 2017
Elections are now set for 2020, just a year after the scheduled completion of Brexit talks.
Under current legislation, parliaments have to sit for five years before new elections take place.
A large majority for the Tories would strengthen the Government's hand in negotiating a good Brexit deal and provide "strong and stable leadership in the national interest", she said.
The Scottish National Party say they will vote against the legislation that formally repeals Britain's membership of the European Union.
In a sign of the key campaign issues ahead, Ms May traded barbs in the Commons with opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, whose party is deeply divided and languishing up to 20 points behind the Conservatives.
But May won the day with a commanding majority. "The election gives the British people the chance to change direction", he said.
But May, who had repeatedly ruled out the possibility of an early election, has faced criticism for the sudden reversal.
With May seen winning a new five-year mandate and boosting her majority in parliament by perhaps 100 seats, the pound held close to six-and-a-half month highs on hopes she may be able to clinch a smoother, more phased departure from the European Union and minimise damage to the United Kingdom economy.
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Theresa May fired the starting pistol on the Conservatives' election campaign by travelling more than 200 miles from Westminster to Greater Manchester to ask voters for a mandate to lead post-Brexit Britain.
Labour's rating is the lowest recorded in a YouGov survey since 2009.
The Labour leader was echoed by Liberal Democrats leader Tim Farron, the SNP's Nicola Sturgeon, and Green Party co-leaders Caroline Lucas and Jonathan Bartley.
Mrs May's call for a snap election was supported by 522 MPs to 13, after the she urged them to put their faith in the people. His office is yet to confirm whether Labour MPs will be whipped into supporting the motion and a number of them told a party parliamentary meeting on Tuesday that they are even considering voting against it.
While snap elections are a gamble, it looks like May's Conservative Party will win big on June 8.
Her predecessor David Cameron agreed to be questioned in front of a BBC Question Time-style audience for live television programmes during the 2015 general election.
But Corbyn said the Prime Minister's U-turn showed she could not be trusted to run the country.
He said May simply sensed the chance to secure a majority of 100 MPs or more.
"The Prime Minister says we have a stronger economy, yet she can't explain why people's wages are lower today than they were 10 years ago or why more households are in debt, six million people earning less than the minimum wage, child poverty is up, pensioner poverty is up". That is why the Lib Dem relish the challenge of a general election. "A prime minister who can not be trusted".
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