THE starting gun has been fired on the first December election in almost a century.

On Tuesday a total of 438 MPs backed the bill to hold the election on December 12, with only 20 voting against.

A Labour amendment, which would have seen the poll held three days earlier, was defeated by 20 votes.

Yesterday the bill made its way through the House of Lords and will now proceed to royal assent.

In the Commons, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn accused the Tories of putting the NHS “up for grabs” as he clashed with Boris Johnson in the final Prime Minister’s Questions before the election.

He said: “This election is a once-in-a-generation chance to end privatisation in our NHS, give it the funding it needs.

“Our NHS is up for grabs by US corporations in a Trump trade deal. This Government is preparing to sell out our NHS.

“Our health service is in more danger than at any time in its glorious history.”

Mr Johnson, however, insisted it was Labour’s economic policies which posed the real threat to the service.

“He would ruin this economy and ruin our ability to fund the NHS, and that is the reality,” the PM said.

Dismissing the Labour leader as an “Islingtonian protester”, he said it was essential the election gave the country a clear way forward.

“It means getting Brexit done and ending the dither and the delay,” Mr Johnson said.

“The time for protest is over. It is time for leadership, and that is what this Government provides.”

Party leader Jo Swinson said the Lib Dem message was resonating with voters, arguing neither Mr Johnson nor Mr Corbyn was fit to be prime minister.

“Our country deserves a better choice, and I am standing as candidate to be prime minister,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Tories will go into the General Election with a double-digit lead in the opinion polls. The party is currently about 15 points ahead of Labour.

It is the biggest lead the Tories have enjoyed for nearly three years.

Below is the latest list of local confirmed candidates:


  • Brexit Party - John Blaylock
  • Conservatives - John Stevenson
  • Labour Party - Ruth Alcroft
  • Lib Dems - Julia Aglionby


  • Brexit Party - David Walker
  • Conservatives - Trudy Harrison
  • Green Party - Jack Lenox
  • Labour Party - Tony Lywood
  • Lib Dems - John Studholme

Penrith and the Border

  • Brexit Party - Michael Thomas
  • Green Party - Ali Ross
  • Lib Dems - Matthew Severn
  • Putting Cumbria First: Jonathan Davies


  • Brexit Party - Phil Walling
  • Conservatives - Mark Jenkinson
  • Green Party - Jill Perry
  • Independent - Nicky Cockburn
  • Labour Party - Sue Hayman
  • Lib Dems - Neil Hughes

The deadline for registering to vote is usually two weeks before the election. In the 2017 election it was May 22, before the election on June 8.

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