Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer
Rishi Sunak and Keir StarmerReuters, Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Wednesday called a national election for July 4, saying Britons would be able to choose their future in a vote his Conservatives are widely expected to lose to the opposition Labour Party after 14 years in power, Reuters reported.

Ending months of speculation as to when he would call a new vote, Sunak stood outside his Downing Street office and called the election several months earlier than expected - a risky strategy with his party far behind Labour in the opinion polls.

"Now is the moment for Britain to choose its future and decide whether it wants to build on the progress we have made or risk going back to square one and no certainty," he said.

"Over the next few weeks, I will fight for every vote, I will earn your trust and I will prove to you that only a Conservative government led by me will not put our hard earned economic stability at risk," added Sunak.

He accused Labour leader Keir Starmer, conversely, of always taking the "easy way out" and of having no plan. "As a result, the future can only be uncertain with them," he said.

Sunak heads into the election not only trailing far behind Labour in the opinion polls but also somewhat isolated from some in his party.

A recent report indicated that Conservative MPs in Britain have launched a new drive to remove Sunak as Prime Minister, with former Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the top of their wish-list as his replacement.

A spokesman for Johnson distanced him from the plotting, saying, “Boris fully supports the Government”.

If Labour, which is running about 20 percentage points ahead of the Conservatives, wins the election, Britain will have had six prime ministers in eight years for the first time since the 1830s.

In the British parliamentary election held in December of 2019, Labour recorded its worst performance, in terms of seats, since 1935.

This led to former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn being replaced with Starmer.