Theresa May has called for a snap general election to be held on 8 June 2017.
Explaining her decision, May said that when she became prime minister, the country needed stability. She has delivered that – as well as delivered on the referendum result.
However the only way to “guarantee certainty and stability for the years ahead is to hold this election and seek your support for the decisions I must take,” continued May.
The prime minister says she will move a motion for an early election in the House of Commons tomorrow, for MPs to vote on.
It will require a two-thirds majority to be carried.
The news may come as a surprise to many, particularly as May previously stressed on numerous occasions that there would be no early election under her leadership.
In September 2016, she said: “I’m not going to be calling a snap election. I’ve been very clear that I think we need that period of time, that stability, to be able to deal with the issues that the country is facing and have that election in 2020.”
And just weeks ago, on 20 March, a Downing Street spokesperson told the press: “There is no change in our position on an early general election.
“There is not going to be a general election.”