Why the TIGers make the DUP less powerful and a 2019 general election less likely

February 19th, 2019

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We all remember the dramatic Commons no confidence motion last month that TMay won but only with the help of the DUP. Without their 10 votes her government would have gone down and we would now be coming to the end of a general election campaign. At the time Mr. Corbyn warned that they make other attempts.

Well since the departure of 7 of his MPs yesterday the LAB leader is in a less powerful position. This is from the Indy’s John Rentoul:

“..one consequence of today’s defections is that it makes an election unlikely even if the DUP abandons Theresa May over Brexit. Umunna and Chris Leslie were emphatic at the news conference that they would not contemplate helping to make Corbyn prime minister. That means that in a future vote of no confidence in May’s government, they would refuse to force an election – and remember that in last month’s confidence vote May would have lost by one if the DUP had voted against her..”

If Corbyn cannot force an early election on a confidence vote then the only way it can happen is if TMay uses the provision of the Fixed Term Parliament Act that allows an election to be called if two thirds of MPs vote for it. My view is that after getting her fingers burned badly at GE2017 she’ll be even more cautious about going early.

Mike Smithson