British MPs reject PM's request for early election

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson fails to win approval of enough lawmakers to go ahead with early election plans.

Ben Ariel ,

Boris Johnson in Parliament
Boris Johnson in Parliament

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson failed on Wednesday evening to win the approval of enough lawmakers to go ahead with his plan to hold an early election, Reuters reports.

Johnson needed to win the backing of at least 434 lawmakers, but only 298 voted in favor of an election while 56 voted against.

The opposition Labour Party instructed its lawmakers to abstain on the vote.

Earlier on Wednesday, the British Parliament voted to delay Brexit. The bill passed with 327 votes to 299 in the House of Commons and will now move to the House of Lords.

Following the vote, Johnson said there is no choice but to hold an election on October 15.

The vote on the bill to delay a no-deal Brexit was made possible after a cross-party alliance defeated Johnson in parliament on Tuesday evening.

Lawmakers voted by 328 to 301 for a motion put forward by opposition parties and rebel lawmakers in Johnson’s party who had been warned they would be kicked out of the Conservative Party if they defied the government.

The vote allowed the opposition and rebels to take control of parliamentary business and bring to a vote the law forcing Johnson to ask the EU to delay Brexit until January 31 unless he has a deal approved by parliament beforehand on the terms and manner of the exit.