A general election can help restore faith in British democracy

ARTICLE1
(Wikipedia)

It’s no news to say that the next few months will be critical for the United Kingdom.

A new prime minister, a new cabinet and the same problem of Brexit, the final four months of 2019 will be decisive in the future and fate of Britain. It all starts with the latest leader, as Boris Johnson gets underway as the new prime minister.

Having already expressed my disapproval at Johnson’s “election”, he must now prove himself. After being elected by just 92,000 Conservative members in the controversial leadership contest, he has to gain the trust and the legitimate support of the British people.

If Johnson had been fairly elected, there would be less protest in how he came into power. The fact that he was even allowed to reach the peak position of British politics through the leadership contest is disgraceful, but now it’s time to face the country.

BORIS COVER
(Getty Images/New Statesman)

With the country in chaos and the people in protest, the only way to slightly comfort the situation is to have a general election before the end of the year, and force Johnson to face a truly democratic process if he wants to be prime minister.

A general election could be held this September, when the MPs return from their summer recess. However, the required five weeks notice for a general election means it would be more likely to happen in October 2019, if not later.

The next election currently isn’t scheduled until 2022, but we cannot wait three years while Johnson assumes power without having faced the ultimate test of British democracy.

His predecessor, Theresa May, had to face an election a year after she took charge, though that was of her own accord as she triggered a snap election in 2017. While May remained in power it proved a huge blow, as it resulted in an infamous hung parliament.

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A general election is what the people need, and it would certainly act as a route towards national unity in the face of adversity. While it will not be able to completely fix the current political situation, it would surely help to restore order.

If Johnson and the Conservative party were victorious, then so be it. While I would continue to oppose and criticise him, if he earned his way to 10 Downing Street through a general election then at least he got there the fair way, so to speak.

The truth is that the above outcome of a Tory victory seems most likely, when noting the current state of the other political parties and the gap that exists in British politics.

Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour party did do better than expected two years ago and could further improve, but now is not the time for Labour during a troubled time for the opposition party and a string of internal controversies.

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(Christopher Furlong/Getty Images via CapX)

The Liberal Democrats are also gaining a lot of support, and are certainly on the rise in places such as London and the South East. Yet they are in a time of transition and development, following the election of new leader Jo Swinson last month.

Regardless of the possible result, a general election would do much good in the UK and help repair the deep wounds of Brexit. The process of leaving the European Union is far from over, and while an election could fall close to the proposed exit date of 31st October, it may be exactly what we need.

One of the worst things about the current political picture is the divide and uncertainty, as the public feel more distant, disconnected and more vulnerable than ever.

We feel powerless in a critical moment in British history, without a say in our so-called democratic society. However, if we are able to regain our voice and legitimately have our say over our next prime minister, we can come closer to once again calling ourselves the United Kingdom.

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READ MORE

Read more of my political articles here

We cannot be the ‘United’ Kingdom under Boris Johnson

Interview: Speaking to Tessa Wullaert

Why the Conservative leadership contest embarrasses British democracy


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