POLITICIANS are gearing up to campaign for what could prove to be crucial seats in parliament, as a general election gets underway.
Following a vote in the House of Commons last night, an election will be held on December 12.
Politicians from all major parties have spoken of a deadlock in parliament over Brexit in the past, with hopes that the election will bring an end to the ongoing impasse.
It comes after the European Union agreed to a ‘flextension’ to the Brexit deadline, moving it to January 31, 2020, as prime minister Boris Johnson’s promise to deliver Brexit by October 31 fell flat in the House of Commons.
Earlier in the day, the SNP and Liberal Democrats gave their backing to a general election, with the Labour Party confirming a similar position by lunchtime.
An amendment was put forward by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn for the election to take place three days early, but this was quashed.
MPs from across the Portsmouth region have given their thoughts on last night’s vote, with eyes from all parties still firmly focused on the future of Brexit.
Conservative MP for Portsmouth North, Penny Mordaunt, said: ‘This is the right decision – MPs must be held to account.
‘I have voted to deliver Brexit and will continue to do so. The nation wants this done and for us to move our country forward.
‘To refuse a general election in the face of this impasse was an untenable position, an indefensible position.’
Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage added: ‘After months of Labour and the Liberal Democrats inflicting endless dither and delay to Brexit, they have finally voted for a general election that would have been entirely unecessary had they not frustrated Brexit.
‘Lib Dems want to cancel Brexit; Labour wants to delay Brexit; only by electing a Conservative majority can we get Brexit done.’
Despite his party’s late decision to back a general election, Labour MP for Portsmouth South Stephen Morgan says his party is prepared for the imminent election battle.
He said: ‘Mr Johnson has shown his utter incompetence as prime minister; his government is in disarray, and he simply cannot be trusted with our public services and all the things we rely on from schools, policing to our cherished NHS.
‘His government has failed to listen to Portsmouth and failed to invest in our city’s future.
‘The next general election will be a defining moment for our country – a once-in-a-generation chance to rebuild our country and transform our city.
‘People remember all too well how the Lib Dems propped up the Tories in government ensuring nearly a decade of austerity and cuts to city services we all rely on.’
Conservative MP for Havant, Alan Mak, added: ‘Labour and the Liberal Democrats have worked together to block Brexit, so I voted for a general election to elect a Conservative government that will deliver Brexit and invest in our schools, police and NHS.
‘I’ve consistently voted in Parliament to deliver Brexit, and I’ll be campaigning on my track record of hard work and delivering results for my constituents locally and my commitment to get Brexit done.’