Why now? Rishi yesterday called the general election for 4 July. James O’Brien has suggested that he has just had enough- a multi-millionaire who is unloved by country, party, colleagues. The other more plausable reason is that his plans will not work and everything can only get worse. Rwanda will not happen and was never going to be a practical answer, it is not a deterent, boat crossings are at a record level this year. Inflation is still making things more expensive. A further possibility was that if he delayed until the end of the term he was possibly going to be deposed by the party. The last possibilty is that there is some bad news in the pipeline for the 2nd half of the year (possibly inflation? War in Europe?).

A reverse psychology is that calculations all point to the electoral situation not getting any better after July (i.e. the economy, law and order, environment). So they will fight the election now as everything is looking worse in the future.

So what will be the arguments put forward by the Conservatives/. It cannot be evidence from the last 14 years! Sunak has spent the last few months intigating various “resets” anyway. Starmer has steered Labour into the centre so reference to the past and Corbyn is unlikely to resonate with the public. So the main thrust is likely to be the culture war and mud slinging. The Conservative Party is already seen as the party of sleaze so they will attempt to do the same to their opponents. However their best attempts to undermine Angela Rayner has been spectacularly unsuccessful, only the rabid right seems to care, will they attempt similar tactics? It is impossible to identify a positive message for the continuation of the Tory misrule of the UK.

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