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Boris Johnson Faces Two Crunch By-Elections On The Same Day Next Month

today17 May 2022 2

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Boris Johnson faces two crunch by-elections on the same day this summer, in a major test of his leadership.

Voters will soon elect new MPs for Wakefield in Yorkshire and Tiverton and Honiton in Devon, it was confirmed on Tuesday.

The likely date for both, as first reported by The Times, is June 23, the sixth anniversary of the UK’s vote to leave the European Union.

Both seats are currently held by the Conservatives, but the party risks losing Wakefield to Labour and Tiverton to the Lib Dems amid a spiralling cost of living crisis.

The contest in Wakefield was triggered after Conservative MP Imran Ahmad Khan was convicted for sexually assaulting a boy.

The Tories won the seat 3,358 in 2019, until then it had been held by Labour since 1932.

Winning back a parliamentary seat in the so-called red wall would be a huge boost for Keir Starmer ahead of the next general election.

In Tiverton, a by-election was triggered after Tory MP Neil Parish quit over revelations he watched porn on his phone in the Commons chamber.

Parish won the seat in 2019 with a healthy majority of 24,239 over Labour, it has been Conservative since its creation in 1997.

But while Labour is currently in second place, the constituency had for many years been a close fight between the Tories and the Lib Dems.

The Lib Dems, boosted by the capture of neighbouring Somerset council in the local elections earlier this month, are hoping for a resurgence in their former south west heartland.

The party is aiming to repeat its success at the recent North Shropshire by-election, where it overturned a 23,000 Tory majority held by disgraced MP Owen Paterson.

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today17 May 2022

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