Boris Johnson suffered a major defeat at the hands of Parliament yesterday, as MPs voted to take control of proceedings in the House of Commons today. The move allows MPs to vote on the Benn bill today, which hopes to extend the Brexit date beyond Mr Johnson’s reach and avoid a no deal exit. The Prime Minister is desperate for support and is set to put forward a motion for a general election later today, which MPs will vote on tonight.
Will Boris Johnson win a general election?
Boris Johnson currently has no majority in Parliament, as MP Philip Lee departed Tory ranks for the Liberal Democrats yesterday.
Despite this, the Prime Minister retains a strong following and is popular among Conservative voters.
According to pollsters at IPSOS Mori when he took office in July, the Conservatives were ahead of Labour by 10 points, compared to a measly two-point lead the month before.
However, satisfaction with the way the Government is running the country remains low.
Some 75 percent of people are dissatisfied with the current Government.
Also, a majority of people are unsatisfied with Boris Johnson’s handling of Brexit, perceived as the number one issue facing the country.
Approval of Jeremy Corbyn’s handling is much lower, so if the leaders faced one other in an election, Mr Johnson still has the edge.
While it seems Boris Johnson could well win an election this year, he may not get the chance to stand just yet.
Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Kier Starmer said Labour would not support a snap election and is instead looking for a guarantee the country would not exit the EU without a deal.
Talking to BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, he said the party would not relent to Mr Johnson’s demands, which he branded a “trap”.
He said: “We are not going to be voting with Johnson today.”
“Labour wants an extension to article 50 to try to stop a no-deal Brexit put into law and a bill tabled on Wednesday to secure that is expected to pass with the support of opposition parties and 20 former Conservative rebels.
“We are not going to be deflected from that. Having got control from Boris Johnson last night we are not going to hand it back to him in what is very obviously a trap.
“[Johnson] says: ‘Of course I’ll have a general election on 15 October, nothing to worry about’ but no one in parliament trusts this man. We are not going to dance to Boris Johnson’s tune.
“What we want to ensure is we’ve got the insurance policy of taking no-deal off the table and we will have a general election on our terms, not Boris Johnson’s terms.”