Prime Minister Theresa May’s decision to call for snap elections has backfired, as the Conservatives failed to win a majority in the British Parliament.
May was confident that the June 8 Parliamentary Elections would strengthen her hand at forthcoming Brexit negotiations. Although the Conservative Party has emerged as the single largest party with 318 seats, the results have thrown up a hung parliament with Labour Party winning 261 seats in the 650-member House of Commons. The opposition under Jeremy Corbyn has gained a significant number of seats this time and revived itself. After the Brexit referendum, the snap polls were the second disastrous election in Britain called by a Tory PM in two years.
The outcome of the polls clearly shows that May’s leadership fails to impress Britons. As a result, May no longer has the political capital to push for a hard Brexit. Experts opine that voters in Britain are very much concerned about the possible repercussions of Brexit. They believe that it will not be possible for Britain to completely cut itself off from the European Union (EU). The current scenario makes Brexit negotiations more complex.
The snap Parliamentary Polls also have a global implication. Earlier, the French Presidential Election set the tone for elections in other European countries, as people in France rejected far-right populist parties that were critical of the EU. Now, the outcome of Parliamentary Polls in Britain has prompted the global community to rethink on anti-globalisation tendencies that have been rising in Europe and other parts of the world.
Interestingly, Britain witnessed a significant increase in youth voter turnout. Young people in Britain, who want job opportunities abroad, have made clear that they are more optimistic about the future. They are against the Brexit. In that sense, May’s political gamble has failed spectacularly.
The Conservative Party’s massive disaster has left the future of Brexit uncertain. May wanted to bargain hard with the EU. That’s why she was eager to hold snap polls. Even on Friday morning, the British premier said: “At this moment, the country needs stability. My party will make it sure.” Later, she started avoiding the media. According to sources close to the Conservatives, a number of party MPs have begun to blame PM May for the debacle. Conservative MP Anna Mary Soubry blasted May’s ‘dreadful campaign’, saying: “She is in a very difficult place. This is a very bad moment for the Conservative Party. We have to take stock and our leader needs to stake stock as well.”
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