Only a few weeks are left until MPs go on holiday for the summer after a politically tumultuous few months. Although people may think this will lead to serenity returning to Westminster, it is likely to be a politically crucial summer.
Here are four events we know will happen over the next few months and one possibility.
Conservative Leadership race:
The hottest political debate of the summer perhaps: who will become the new Leader of the Conservative Party and the Prime Minister? Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt have got as far as the final round, which will see roughly 100,000 party members select the country’s next Prime Minister. Brexit has been the main issue in the race. Johnson claims he will take the UK out of the EU regardless if a deal is reached by October 31st or not. Whilst Hunt has stated his opposition to leaving without a deal. An official result is expected by the week starting July 22nd.
A new Lib Dem Leader:
Yes, the main focus of the media has been on the race to become the Conservative Party leader, but they are not the only party selecting a new leader. Jo Swinson, a former business minister, and Ed Davey, a former Secretary of State for Energy, are both vying for the leadership of the Liberal Democrats. In the race, Jo has emphasised working with other anti-Brexit parties to stop Brexit, whilst Ed has put tackling climate change as one of his priorities, alongside opposing Brexit. The result will be announced by July 23rd.
Brecon and Radnorshire by-election:
A parliamentary by-election will be held in the constituency of Brecon and Radnorshire, after constituents signed a petition to oust the sitting Conservative MP for breaking the law on expenses. The Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Labour, Brexit Party and other candidates are standing. Polling day will be on August 1st.
New EU Commission President:
After the EU elections in May saw the rise of green, liberal and nationalist parties in Europe, MEPs will come together to vote on electing a new European Commission, the executive body of the European Union. The German defence minister, Ursula von der Leyer, is seen as the frontrunner. The Commission itself won’t start functioning until the autumn, but the next few months will see political horse trading in Brussels and Strasbourg.
An early general election?
An early general election is not certain, but some observers think the end of the summer could lead to one. The Labour Party plans to hold a vote of confidence in the government once the Conservative leadership election is over. The Conservative leader, whoever wins the party leadership election, might also be tempted to call a general election to try and strengthen their hand in Parliament. Although they might be haunted by Theresa May’s failure when doing the same back in 2017.