Opposition parties call for early general election following Theresa May 'coronation'

Theresa May is set to become the new Prime Minister unopposed

Jon Stone
Monday 11 July 2016 16:59 BST
Theresa May leaves after attending a cabinet meeting at Number 10
Theresa May leaves after attending a cabinet meeting at Number 10

Opposition parties have called for a general election with Theresa May set to become Prime Minister unopposed.

The Tory leadership contest was cut short on Monday after Ms May’s internal rival Andrea Leadsom dropped out of the race.

Labour’s election coordinator Jon Trickett said it was crucial for the country to have a “democratically elected Prime Minister” and branded Ms May’s election a “coronation”.

“It now looks likely that we are about to have the coronation of a new Conservative Prime Minister,” he said.

“It is crucial, given the instability caused by the Brexit vote, that the country has a democratically elected Prime Minister. I am now putting the whole of the party on a General Election footing.

“It is time for the Labour Party to unite and ensure the millions of people in the country left behind by the Tories' failed economic policies, have the opportunity to elect a Labour government.”

Theresa May: Profile of the UK's next Prime Minister

During the leadership contest Ms May ruled out an early general election, saying that not holding one would create stability during Brexit negotiations.

She will now become Prime Minister in the coming days following official confirmation from the Conservative party board.

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron however said the Tories had “no mandate” following the

“With Theresa May’s coronation we need an early General Election,” he said.

“The Tories now have no mandate. Britain deserves better than this.”

The calls were echoed by Caroline Lucas, the Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, who is standing to lead her party.

“Andrea Leadsom’s decision to pull out of the leadership race underlines the necessity of a General Election this year, something the Greens have called for since the EU referendum result was announced,” she said.

The Independent reported earlier this month that Ukip leader Nigel Farage had called for a snap election to be called following the Brexit vote.

He urged the use of a proportional voting system so that smaller parties would receive fair representation.

Ms May may still be tempted to hold an early general election because of the Tories’ slim majority and the current disarray in Labour.

Under the Fixed Term Parliament Act the Conservatives would have to vote “no confidence” in her leadership and wait for 14 days, voting down any alternative attempt at forming a government.

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