Next United Kingdom general election
All 650 seats[a] in the House of Commons
326 seats needed for a majority
The next United Kingdom general election is scheduled to be held on Thursday 2 May 2024, in line with the Fixed-term Parliaments Act. If held to schedule, it would be the second general election to be held at the end of a fixed-term Parliament, and the first since 2015.
The result at the last general election and the current situation in the House of Commons is given below:
The Conservative Party, which won a majority at the 2019 general election, included pledges in its manifesto to remove the fifteen-year limit on voting for British citizens living abroad, and to introduce a voter identification requirement in Great Britain.
In March 2020, Cabinet Office minister Chloe Smith confirmed that the 2023 Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies would commence based on retaining 650 seats. The 2023 Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies began in January 2021 with the previous relevant legislation having been amended by the Parliamentary Constituencies Act 2020.
The postponed Sixth Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies proposed reducing the number of constituencies from 650 to 600. In April 2016, each of the four parliamentary Boundary Commissions of the United Kingdom recommenced their review process. A projection by psephologists Colin Rallings and Michael Thrasher of how the 2017 votes would have translated to seats under the new boundaries suggested the changes would be beneficial to the Conservative Party and detrimental to Labour.
Prior to the Parliamentary Constituencies Act 2020, boundary changes could not be implemented until they were approved by both Houses of Parliament. No changes were submitted by the government during the 2017–2019 Parliament. The majority Conservative government manifesto states that this will be implemented before the next general election.
Date of the election
The Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 (FTPA) introduced fixed-term parliaments to the United Kingdom, with elections scheduled on the first Thursday in May of the fifth year after the previous general election, unless the previous general election took place between 1 January and the first Thursday in May, in which case the election takes place on the first Thursday in May of the fourth year after the previous general election.
Removing the power of the monarch, on advice of the prime minister, to dissolve parliament before its five-year maximum length, the act permits early dissolution if the House of Commons votes by a two-thirds supermajority. Parliament is also dissolved if a government loses a vote of no confidence by a simple majority and a new government is not formed within 14 days. Alternatively, a bill requiring just a simple majority in both Houses could be introduced to establish in law an earlier date for the election, which is how the date of the previous general election was set in 2019.
Thus, the next general election is due to take place on Thursday 2 May 2024, unless it is triggered earlier. Under the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 parliament would be dissolved 25 working days before this date on Tuesday 26 March. Under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act, the Prime Minister may schedule polling day up to two months after 2 May, subject to approval by both Houses.
Proposed repeal of the Fixed-term Parliaments Act
At the 2019 general election, where the Conservatives won a majority of 80 seats, the manifesto of the party contained a commitment to repeal the Fixed-term Parliaments Act due to "paralysis at a time when the country has needed decisive action". The pledge was confirmed in the first Queen's Speech following the election.
In December 2020, the government published a draft Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 (Repeal) Bill, later retitled the Dissolution and Calling of Parliament Bill when it was laid before Parliament in May 2021, which would ultimately repeal the 2011 Fixed-term Parliaments Act, revive the prerogative powers of the monarch to dissolve Parliament (at the request of the prime minister), and ensure that a Parliament is automatically dissolved five years after it first met (16 December 2024) and polling day being 25 working days later (23 January 2025). The last time Parliament was dissolved in this way for a general election was in 1949, when the 1950 general election was announced for February.
|Opinion polling for UK general elections|
|Opinion polls • Leadership approval|
|Opinion polls • Leadership approval|
|Opinion polls • Leadership approval|
The chart below shows opinion polls conducted for the next United Kingdom general election. The trend lines are local regressions (LOESS).
- Under the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act 2011 the number of constituencies would have been reduced to 600 following the 2023 Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies. The Parliamentary Constituencies Act 2020 kept the number of constituencies at 650.
- Government of the United Kingdom.
- Labour, as the largest party not in government, takes the role of Official Opposition. The Co-operative Party is represented in the House of Commons by 25 Labour MPs sitting with the Labour and Co-operative designation.
- Sinn Féin (7) abstain, i.e. they do not take their seats in the House of Commons; the Speaker and 3 Deputy Speakers (2 Conservative and 1 Labour) have only a tie-breaking vote constrained by conventions.
- The number of voting government MPs less two non-voting deputy speakers (363), minus the sum of all other present MPs less the non-voting Speaker and one deputy speaker (276).
- The number of voting government MPs less two non-voting deputy speakers (361), minus the sum of all other present MPs less the non-voting Speaker and one deputy speaker (278).
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