By Simon Gentry
With the Conservative government now a minority administration, an election in the next few months must be a certainty.
With the Tories approximately 10% ahead in the polls, there seem to be two broad possible outcomes when that election comes:
The first is that Johnson’s Conservatives run a ‘People versus Parliament’ campaign and win a modest majority. He then forms a new government, possibly supported by a handful of Brexit Party MPs, and takes the country out of the EU, delivering his central promise of leaving the EU on 31 October, with or without a deal.
The second scenario is that the Labour Party is able to cobble together a ‘Rainbow coalition’ supported by the Scottish and Welsh nationalists, and the Liberal Democrats. The core objective of this administration would be to hold a second EU referendum. As a price for supporting Labour, the SNP and Plaid Cymru would secure referenda on their independence or constitutional status, if the second EU referendum confirmed that the country wanted to leave the EU.
According to the Electoral Commission, a referendum will take at least nine months to organise. The latest polls show that the public is still evenly split on the issue. There may, therefore, be no resolution of this issue for many years … or it may all be settled in a matter of weeks.