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    General election: What is purdah and which bills are stuck in the wash-up process before it begins?

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailParliament is expected to wind up on Friday after Rishi Sunak stunned Westminster by calling a snap general election for 4 July.The Commons is dissolved after an election is called and the official closure date for this election will be 30 May.After this date, MPs lose their jobs and either decide to leave politics, campaign for re-election in their constituency or run for a different seat.What is parliamentary ‘wash-up’Parliament shuts down on 30 May More

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    Tories scramble to find almost 200 election candidates as Gove leads exodus

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailThe Tories are scrambling to find candidates for almost a third of constituencies after Rishi Sunak’s decision to keep many of his party’s senior figures in the dark about his decision to call a snap election.It is understood that when Mr Sunak made his rain-sodden announcement on the steps of Downing Street on Wednesday afternoon, candidates for 191 of the 650 seats still needed to be selected. Since then more vacancies have occurred with a number of Tory MPs announcing they will retire, bringing the total to at least 78, breaking the 1997 record of 75. This dramatically included levelling-up secretary Michael Gove and former leadership candidate Andrea Leadsom on Friday evening.Party chiefs are desperately appealing to prospective candidates to put themselves forward for seats – many of which they are projected to lose heavily – with the Conservatives expected to still be putting up batches of adverts for constituencies into the weekend.Rishi Sunak told journalists he was ‘pumped up’ during his whirlwind tour of the UK More

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    General election 2024 – live: Sunak not ruling out Boris Johnson campaign comeback as Mackinlay steps down

    Starmer responds to Jeremy Corbyn standing as independent candidate in general electionSign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailRishi Sunak has confirmed he would welcome former prime minister Boris Johnson to join the Tory campaign and could make an appearance ahead of the general election on July 4.But the Conservatives have decided to ban Boris Johnson ally David Frost from standing as a candidate and from applying to stand in any of the constituencies left to nominate. The former Brexit secretary spent months criticising Rishi Sunak’s leadership of the party and country, even calling for him to be replaced.Meanwhile, the Commons has been hit by a wave of more than 100 resignations, with 76 Tories announcing they’re standing down so far. Craig Mackinlay, who lost his arms and legs from sepsis, has also joined the list and revealed that Sunak’s surprise announcement of a July election had him quit as an MP.Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn has announced he is standing as an independent candidate at the general election to fight Labour for Islington North, vowing to be “an independent voice for equality, democracy and peace”.Show latest update 1716562166General Election Contdown: Key dates May 24: Parliament prorogued which means the end of the Parliamentary session, bringing most business to an end.May 30: Parliament dissolved. By law, this has to take place no later than 25 working days before polling day.June 7: Deadline for candidates to be nominated. June 18: Deadline to register to vote. This can be done online at gov.uk/register-to-vote.June 19: Deadline to apply for a postal vote.June 26: Deadline to apply for a proxy vote – in other words, for someone to vote on your behalf – and to apply for a Voter ID certificate, if you do not already have a valid form of photo identification.July 4: Election day. Polls will open from 7am to 10pm.July 9: The new Parliament will be summoned to meet.July 17: State opening of Parliament.Labour will hope to hang on to its strong lead in the polls until election day More

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    Tories warned ‘no seat is safe’ as Lib Dems put Gove and Hunt on ‘big beast’ hit list

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailChancellor Jeremy Hunt and cabinet veteran Michael Gove appear at the head of a Lib Dem hit list of top Tory targets they believe they can unseat in the general election.The list is part of a wider strategy by the Lib Dems to “break the Tory blue wall” of traditionally safe seats across the south of England with previously unwinnable constituencies in counties such as Surrey now in their targets.Since winning the Chesham and Amersham by-election in 2021, Lib Dem leader Sir Ed Davey has made no secret of his hopes to repaint the blue wall yellow on the electoral map.But the plan to pour extra resources into seats held by five current cabinet ministers and five more being vacated by former Tory grandees including Theresa May and Sir John Redwood has echoes of the party’s disastrous decapitation strategy in 2005 which backfired spectacularly.Michael Gove’s seat is vulnerable More

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    Rishi Sunak accused of letting renters down after no-fault eviction bill dropped before election

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailRishi Sunak’s government has been accused of letting renters down after it emerged that legislation banning no-fault evictions will not be passed before the election. The Conservative pledge to end section 21 – or no-fault evictions – will now not be met, as it will not return to the Commons before parliament is prorogued on Friday. The provision allows landlords to evict tenants without having to give a reason beyond what is in a tenancy agreement. The bill was first introduced in the Commons in May last year but its progress stalled after Conservative MPs campaigned for stronger protections for landlords. Commons leader Penny Mordaunt has not included the bill in the list of “wash-up” legislation that could be rushed through by MPs ahead of the election campaign. Downing Street denied failing renters, with a spokesperson saying: “It’s part of the wash-up process that bills are able to be passed where there is a consensus. But of course the government wanted to get this passed and that’s why it was introduced in the first place.”Tom Darling, campaign manager of the Renters’ Reform Coalition, said renters have been badly let down, adding: “In 2019 the Conservative Manifesto promised to deliver a better deal for private renters and an end to no-fault evictions. “Renters in England – trapped in an unhealthy, unaffordable and insecure renting system – have been waiting five long years for action on that pledge”. Official figures published this month showed a six-year high in repossessions by bailiffs through no-fault evictions More

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    Jeremy Corbyn expelled from Labour Party after confirming he will stand as independent in general election

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailFormer Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has been banished from the party after announcing he will stand as an independent candidate in Islington North in the general election.Mr Corbyn’s announcement on Friday morning will have come as a headache for Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, who banned his predecessor from standing for Labour after he failed to apologise for his handling of antisemitism within the party.In response, Sir Keir reaffirmed to Sky News why he blocked the 74-year-old from standing for Labour, claiming he “would tear antisemitism out of our party by the roots”. He added: “That was my first solemn promise, and I followed through on that, and that is why I took the decision that Jeremy Corbyn would not stand as a Labour candidate at this election.“Now what’s happened with Jeremy standing as an independent, that’s a matter for him.”Soon after, it emerged that Mr Corbyn had been informed that his party membership had been revoked. And just hours after that, Labour selected local entrepeneur Praful Nargund to stand against him. The contest will be one of the most closely watched on election night, with Mr Corbyn hoping his tireless local campaigning will help him hold the seat against the odds.Mr Corbyn, who has held Islington North seat for more than 40 years, made the announcement to stand as an independent in an interview with the Islington Tribune in which he said he would be “a voice for equality, democracy and peace”.For updates ahead of the general election – follow our live blog by clicking hereFormer Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says he want to continue representing Islington North constituents on issues such as social justice, human rights and peace More

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    Angela Rayner police probe expected to conclude before general election

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailThe police probe into Angela Rayner’s tax and property affairs will be concluded before the general election, with Labour increasingly confident she will be cleared, according to reports.An announcement on the outcome of Greater Manchester Police’s investigation is expected in the next week, a month and a half after it was opened.Ms Rayner’s allies are hoping Greater Manchester Police will make a public statement drawing a line under the row about the 2015 sale of her council house, The Times reported. It would be a boost for Labour’s election campaign, with senior Tories having repeatedly used the investigation as an attack line.Sir Keir Starmer kicked off Labour’s campaign alongside Angela Rayner More

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    ‘Skydiving, catamarans’: MP Steve Baker’s extraordinary response when asked what he will do if loses election

    Sign up for the View from Westminster email for expert analysis straight to your inboxGet our free View from Westminster emailWith the Tories suffering a pounding in the polls after the announcement of a snap general election, it’s perhaps not surprising some MPs will already be thinking about their next move.And that certainly appears to be the case for Northern Ireland Minister Steve Baker, who was maybe too quick to reel off a list of high-adrenaline sports when asked what he’d do if he lost his Wycombe seat.“Skydiving, motorcycling, fast catamaran sailing… the wide range of things I’ll do,” he said in his response to a question from the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire, which has since gone viral on social media.“I think you’re talking about work though,” Mr Baker added, with a smile.Ms Derbyshire then responded: “I was talking about the work, but that’s fine.” Mr Baker added: “The first thing I’ll do if I don’t win my seat is have a long break.”For the latest on the general election – follow our live updates by clicking here‘Skydiving, motorcycling, fast catamaran sailing’ – MP Steve Baker reels off list of things he’ll do if he loses his seat at the general election More