Harborough MP’s surprise at snap election

Sir Edward Garnier.
Sir Edward Garnier.

Harborough MP Sir Edward Garnier said he was “surprised” by Prime Minister Theresa May’s call for a snap election on June 8.

But he added: “Having heard what she had to say, I quite understand her position.”

Explaining her change of heart on an early election, Mrs May has said: “I have concluded the only way to guarantee certainty and security for years ahead is to hold this election.”

She added: “The country is coming together but Westminster is not.” She had previously insisted there would be no early election.

Sir Edward, Harborough’s Conservative MP since 1992, confirmed he will be standing again if approved by the local party.

He said: “It is important to the Government to present a broad national vote of confidence as these negotiations continue.”

He said a Conservative Government returned with an increased majority on June 8 would demonstrate to the European Union - and a potentially rebellious House of Lords - that the party really was speaking for Britain.

Sir Edward was a “Remainer” in the Europe debate.

But this week he told the Mail: “I lost that argument last year. We’ve now got to get on and push through the Brexit negotiations.”

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said he welcomed the election decision, saying he would campaign for a Labour Government that will “put the 
interests of the majority first”.

He said a Labour Government would deal with crises in housing, education funding and the NHS.

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said the election gave the British people a “chance to change the direction of your country”.

He said people should vote Lib Dem: “If you want to avoid a disastrous hard Brexit, if you want to keep Britain in the single market, if you want a Britain that is open, tolerant and united.”