(April 18 Bloomberg) U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said she will seek an early election on June 8, in an unexpected gamble aimed at strengthening her hand going into talks on leaving the European Union.
The surprise statement came less than a month after she triggered the formal start of Brexit and marks a reversal of her position before the Easter break, when her office insisted an early election wasn't on the cards.
An election isn't due until 2020 through her popularity -- polls show her Conservative Party is more than 20 points ahead of the main opposition -- give her an opening to consolidate her power. The announcement indicates that May has decided she cannot get the Brexit legislation she needs through the House of Commons with the slim majority she inherited from David Cameron.
"There should be unity here in Westminister but instead there is division," she said in a statement outside her Downing Street residence on Tuesday. "The country is coming together but Westminister is not.." A rift in Parliament will damage the government's ability to make a success of Brexit, she said.
Click on the link below to see the full story from Bloomberg: (by Robert Hutton, Alex Morales & Tim Ross)