If there’s one thing this country needs right now, it’s a general election. A nation on its knees in a Brexit conundrum, there’s no more uncertainty and divide than in the House of Commons, where Boris Johnson is battling to get us out of the EU by 31st October.
With roughly four weeks to go, it’s anyone’s guess as to how the next few months will go down. Will we have left the EU by the end of the year? Will Johnson still be in power come 2020? And when will we next return to the polls in any shape or form?
The first two questions are really based on opinion, and how much trust you have in the Prime Minister. The third one has an optimistic answer, as we could have a general election in the next few months. The Government has already had two Commons calls for an election rejected, though for good reason as MPs wanted a Brexit extension before going to the polls.
Now that Johnson’s antidemocratic suspension of Parliament has been revoked and the Commons is back in session, we are edging ever closer to a much-needed General Election. Having an election could help heal the UK’s Brexit scars, and restore some faith in democracy for the British people. But who would win in a general election.
Of course, the aim for the Government is not only to regain their power, but to strengthen their numbers in Parliament. Johnson knows that he needs to restore the Conservatives’ majority in the Commons, which was lost over two years ago by his predecessor Theresa May in the 2017 snap election.
It will be a big ask, but there’s no other option for Boris if he wants to reinstate a stable Government.
It is unlikely that the Conservatives will win by a landslide, but it will be a victory for Boris if he can simply get over the threshold of 326 seats. It will be tough for the Tories not because of the quality of the opposition, but because of the weakness of the Government.
If anyone is going dethrone Boris Johnson, it will be Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party. While the anti-semitism controversy and their failure to have a stance on Brexit and a second referendum has knocked their support, Labour are as always the main challengers to the Tory Government.
There’s every chance that they can strengthen on their 2017 result, where they did significantly better than expected. The real aim is to overtake the Tories and restore a Labour Government.
Labour were underestimated two years ago, and if there’s a general election round the corner I don’t see why they can’t win it. It would be a massive test in Corbyn’s leadership and a huge operation ahead, and while they truthfully aren’t in the strongest situation, neither are the Conservatives, and it’s certainly up for grabs.
While Labour are the main competition for Boris Johnson, the Liberal Democrats shouldn’t be ignored. With new leadership under Jo Swinson and gaining support in major cities such as London, the Lib Dems look like they can greatly increase their presence in Parliament.
While a strong election may not see them gain enough seats to win complete power, a hung parliament could see another Lib Dem coalition, though it is unlikely we’ll see a repeat of the 2010 election outcome.
Another election could also see the resurgence of UKIP, who have gone quiet since the 2016 referendum. Brexit has changed the way people see the country and its policies, with stances on immigration and the rate of hate crimes worsening.
At a time where many just want to exit the EU, UKIP could rebuild their support snatch some seats nationwide in what would be a shock result.
It also poses the question whether the Brexit Party have any chance whatsoever, though their policies are short-term rather than long-term. While the smaller party’s results are often ignored, they could prove crucial if the Conservatives further lose their majority.
“It will be tough for the Tories not because of the quality of the opposition, but because of the weakness of the Government.”
Last time out we saw a hung parliament, which saw a controversial coalition with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP). A hung parliament looks to be the most likely outcome of the next general election, but who would the coalition involve?
Boris Johnson could simply renew the Conservatives’ partnership with the DUP, though change is needed and they may not even win enough seats.
The Lib Dems are another option, though it’s hard to see that coalition happening for the second time this decade. It could be the Green Party should they win some more seats, or maybe UKIP or the Brexit party could assume power. Whoever the coalition would be with, it’s not likely to go down well.
Just like football, anything can happen in politics. It’s more predictable and (usually) less dramatic, but the story of an underdog winning is just as possible in the world of politics. That’s the case for the UK’s imminent election- anything can happen, and in theory anyone can win.