May planning UK general election for June 8

Cheryl Sanders
April 19, 2017

The White House says May telephoned Trump regarding her plans and that Trump wished the British people the best of luck in the June 8 vote.

An aide later insisted Labour will vote to hold the election, but declined to say whether a three-line whip will be imposed.

Prime Minister Theresa May last month formally triggered Britain's exit talks, nine months after the country voted in a referendum to leave the EU.

The Queen will likely open the new Parliamentary session in mid-June after the election is over and a new government has been formed. Leaders of European Union states are due to adopt negotiating guidelines at an April 29 summit, and the bloc will prepare detailed plans for the talks with Britain by late May.

The Scottish National Party now holds 54 of Scotland's 59 seats in the British Parliament, making it the third-largest party there.

A strong Conservative majority would also aid the U.K.'s position in the upcoming negotiations with the rest of the EU.

May will go to the House of Commons Tuesday to lay down the necessary legislation for the calling of an early general election. "Britain is leaving the European Union and there can be no turning back", she curtly explained yesterday.

May's governing Conservatives now have a slight majority, with 330 seats in the 650-seat House of Commons.

Gains have been slowed by EUR/GBP selling USD/JPY is trading at ~108.52 vs session low of 108.35 seen as Treasury yields dropped, the pair relinquishing all gains posted after Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said Monday that dollar strength over the longer-term is a good thing USA economic data showed that March housing starts declined to a 1,215k annual rate vs expectations for a drop to a 1,250k pace; prior month data was revised upward, cushioning the disappointment.

The UK call for a snap general election on June 8 is not a surprise as Prime Minister Theresa May was expected to resort to a "political" move against the opposition.

Britain joins a list of western European countries scheduled to hold elections this year.

Both Labour and Liberal Democrats have officially welcomed the early poll.

The latest Press Association analysis of opinion polls put the Tories on 43%, a 17-point lead over Labour's 26%.

"We won't be doing television debates", May said, adding that politicians should spend election campaigns "out and about" meeting voters.

Asked if he was the next prime minister, Mr Corbyn said: "If we win the election, yes".

However, a poll can be called before then if backed by two thirds of MPs or if there is a no confidence vote in the Government.

Under the Fixed-Term Parliaments Act, introduced under the last coalition government, the next election was not due until 2020.

If the election is approved Wednesday, Parliament will be dissolved on May 2, sparking nearly six weeks of campaigning.

May's Conservative Party is way ahead of the main opposition Labour Party in opinion polls. A resounding win would bolster her mandate in upcoming talks with the European Union over the country's exit.

But on Tuesday, she said she had "reluctantly" changed her mind because political divisions "risk our ability to make a success of Brexit".

In the wake of an announcement that May will make an unexpected statement in Downing Street at 11:15 a.m. (1015GMT), the pound was down 0.3 percent at $1.2525.

She said her cabinet members had agreed with her decision at a meeting she chaired at Number 10 immediately before her announcement.

Prime Minister Theresa May leaves 10 Downing Street in London, Tuesday April 18, 2017.

Markets appear to enjoy the prospect of how close the election is and see May strengthening her hand should the Conservative party gain a commanding majority. "What we need to do is to be very careful about what we're going to do after Brexit".

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