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News > Country

United Kingdom to Go to Early General Elections on July 4

  • UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, May 22, 2024.

    UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, May 22, 2024. | Photo: X/ @jhuntridge

Published 22 May 2024 (4 hours 16 minutes ago)
Opinion

PM Sunak's unexpected decision comes as the Tories are trailing far behind the Labour Party.

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced the advancement of the general elections in the United Kingdom to July 4th.

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The unexpected decision comes as the Conservatives are trailing far behind the opposition Labour Party, according to all polls, and on the same day it was revealed that inflation dropped to 2.3 percent in April, its lowest level in almost three years.

Sunak informed King Charles III of his intention to call for elections on July 4th, despite having the option to do so anytime before January 28th, the end of the parliamentary term.

After assuring that the United Kingdom has gone through its most challenging period since World War II, Sunak said his administration has focused on restoring economic stability to the country following the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I came to government promising economic stability, and thanks to collective effort, we have achieved two milestones: our economy is growing faster than anyone anticipated... and inflation has returned to normal levels. This is proof that our priorities are working," he added.

In a statement that turned into his first campaign act, Sunak said that the UK will have to choose between his Tories and the Labour Party, which, in his view, "would be like going back to square one."

This morning, Sunak had reiterated in the government control session in Parliament that his intention was to call the elections in the second half of this year, but did not specify when.

Asked by the leader of the Scottish Nationalists in the House of Commons, Stephen Flynn, about the abundant speculation on an early election, Sunak insisted on his intention to hold the elections in the second half, without clarifying when.

The announcement has taken analysts by surprise, given the 20-point lead that polls give the Labour Party over the Tories, which could be enough to achieve an absolute majority.

Just three weeks ago, municipal elections were held in which the Conservatives had historically low results, losing half of their councilors in the localities where voting took place.

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