In less than two months, Prime Minister Theresa May‘s political party could possibly be replaced, despite only having been the governing party since 2015. Earlier today, April 18, the Conservative leader shocked the United Kingdom by calling for a snap general election and the political world is reeling as a result.
As reported by CNN, Theresa May made the unexpected announcement this morning at Downing Street. Although her government is only halfway through their mandated five-year term, the 60-year-old believes it is in the best interest of the already heavily delayed Brexit process to give the public a chance to choose another political party to lead Britain, should they wish. The “political game playing” of opposition parties, she says, will only continue if a general election is not held immediately.
The Eastbourne native went on to say, according to BBC News, that despite it being obvious that Westminster should be united in this time of heavy political conflict, they are not. This divide, Theresa May continues, has led to her realizing that the only solution is an immediate vote being called.
Over the next two months, the Prime Minister will not be taking part in any head-to-head broadcasted debates, a decision that Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn was quick to call her out on. Corbyn uploaded a tweet on his official account almost immediately after Theresa May announced the snap election, with his post questioning the legitimacy of her statement insisting that this vote was “all about leadership”. If this really rang true, he says, she should want to appear at these events rather than letting other politicians handle it.
Opposition parties have no plans of attempting to block the move, says The New York Times, and as such the British parliament has been launched into full-gear election mode. The European Union also issued a statement in which they essentially paid no mind to Theresa May’s announcement, as they have decided it will have zero effect on current Brexit negotiations, regardless of if she feels it should.
The Brexit process has, to say the least, been tumultuous over the past 10 months. On June 23, Britain voted to leave the European Union, and from that very second that there has been non-stop conflict. In December of 2016, it was decided that the matter had to be brought to parliament before any further steps were taken to trigger Article 50. Shortly after that, a discussion was tabled whether two years would be enough time to sort out all the details, or whether five would be more reasonable. It is understandable, given that Theresa May’s original plan was to repeal the initial EU law next month, that the leader is frustrated and desperate to figure out her next move.
By Lorelai Zelmerlow