Timetable a snap general election would need to follow

A snap general election this autumn would need to follow a strict timetable by law, even if it was triggered by a vote of no confidence in the Government.

MPs return to the Commons from their summer recess on September 3.

This is the earliest opportunity for a motion of no-confidence to be tabled by the opposition.

The motion would most likely be debated on the following day, September 4, ending with a vote.

If the motion is passed, and a majority of MPs voted to say they did not have confidence in Boris Johnson’s government, a 14-day period would be automatically triggered beginning at midnight on the same day.

During these 14 days, MPs have the chance to form a new government that can win a vote of confidence.

If the 14-day period was triggered on September 4, it would end on September 18.

Read on...

POLITICS Brexit Election
(PA graphic)

Were MPs fail to pass a motion of confidence in a new government by the end of September 18, a general election would be automatically triggered.

A Crown proclamation would then be made to set the general election date, followed by a dissolution of parliament.

The prime minister gets to advise the Queen on what the date should be, however.

There is also a rule dictating the minimum length of time between dissolution and the date of the election.

Parliament must be dissolved at the beginning of the 25th working day before polling day.

To accommodate this 25-day period, the earliest possible date for a general election would be October 31, the day the UK is due to leave the EU, with or without a deal.

In this scenario, parliament would be dissolved on September 26.

But this presumes that polling day has to be on a Thursday, as it has been for every general election since 1935.

POLITICS Brexit Election
(PA graphic)

In theory a general election could take place on any day of the week, and hence before October 31, though the timings would still be tight.

And it would still require Boris Johnson to pick the date himself.

He might decide to advise the Queen on a date beyond October 31, after the UK is due to leave the EU, possibly without a deal.

On the other hand Mr Johnson might respond to a vote of no confidence by calling an election immediately.

The last time the UK held a general election in the month of October was 1974.

Further back, the last time a general election took place in November was 1935, while there has not been one in December since 1923.

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us