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Home Breaking Rishi Sunak Calls General Election for July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour’s Strong Lead

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election for July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour’s Strong Lead

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

In a surprising and high-stakes move, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has announced a general election for July 4, 2024. The announcement, made in a Downing Street statement amidst pouring rain, comes despite warnings from within his own Conservative Party about the risk of a devastating defeat with Labour currently leading significantly in the polls.

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

Sunak addressed the nation, emphasizing that inflation has returned “back to normal,” and stating, “The question now is how and who do you trust to turn that foundation into a secure future… now is the moment for Britain to decide its future.”

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

Preparations for a Conservative rally at the Excel Centre are already underway, with the party gearing up for an intense campaign. However, the decision has sparked turmoil within the party. MPs expressed frustration and disbelief, with some accusing Sunak of having a “death wish.” The chair of the influential 1922 Committee, Graham Brady, is reportedly receiving numerous messages from members expressing no confidence in Sunak.

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

A former Cabinet minister commented, “There will be queues outside Graham Brady’s door.” Another senior backbencher hinted at the possibility of a coup attempt to prevent the dissolution of Parliament.

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

The announcement has also stirred significant activity within Westminster. Jeremy Hunt cancelled an appearance on ITV’s Peston show, and key ministers like Michael Gove and Jeremy Hunt were seen arriving at Downing Street for urgent Cabinet meetings. Health Secretary Victoria Atkins was photographed smiling for the cameras, perhaps masking the internal tension within the party.

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

Sunak’s decision was influenced by recent positive economic indicators, including a significant drop in inflation. The headline CPI rate fell from 3.2% in March to 2.3% last month, nearing the Bank of England’s target of 2%. However, concerns remain about core inflation and public sector borrowing, which could impact the government’s ability to cut taxes before the election.

Rishi Sunak Calls General Election For July 4: PM Takes Massive Gamble Despite Labour's Strong Lead

The latest Savanta poll shows Labour with a 17-point lead over the Conservatives, which, according to Electoral Calculus, could result in a massive majority of 236 seats for Labour leader Keir Starmer. The projected outcome would see Labour with 443 MPs compared to the Conservatives’ 124, a drastic reduction from the 376 seats won in Boris Johnson’s 2019 landslide.

Sunak’s bold move is seen as a bid to capitalize on recent economic improvements and to avoid potential challenges in the autumn, such as the controversial Rwanda deportation flights and the peak season for channel migrants.

While a summer election poses risks, it may allow the Conservatives to regain some control before these issues come to the forefront. The choice of July 4 is notable as it will be the first July election since 1945 when Clement Attlee’s Labour defeated Winston Churchill’s Conservatives.

Political analysts speculate on various outcomes and strategies, but one thing is certain: Sunak’s decision has set the stage for a highly unpredictable and potentially transformative election. The coming weeks will be crucial for both major parties as they gear up for a campaign that could redefine Britain’s political landscape.

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