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Sunak waiting to call vote 'gives us time to show plan working', says Cameron: UK election

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Published Time: 12.05.2024 - 16:40:25 Modified Time: 12.05.2024 - 16:40:25

Lord Cameron has said Rishi Sunak is right to play the long game amid speculation of a summer election

Lord Cameron has said Rishi Sunak is right to play the long game amid speculation of a summer election.

Political reporter @fayebrownSky

Sunday 12 May 2024 14:10, UK

Rishi Sunak is "absolutely right" to hold off calling an election because it gives voters time to see "the plan is working", the foreign secretary has said. 

Lord Cameron told Sunday Morning With Trevor Phillips that the prime minister is a "good man, doing a great job at a difficult time" after a bruising set of results at the local elections.

Asked what advice he'd give Mr Sunak to close the 20-point gap in the polls with Labour, the former Tory leader said he'd tell him to "stick to the plan"pointing to inflation coming down and the economy exiting recession.

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He added: "The longer actually we have between now and the election, the more you're going to see the plan is working."

The next election must be held by 28 January 2025.

Mr Sunak has previously said he intends to call it in the second half of this year, but that has not stopped speculation he could go earlier, possibly holding it in the summer.

Lord Cameron stressed he is "not in charge of election timing".

But, he added, Mr Sunak "said the second half of the year and I think that's absolutely right, because you can see the economic plan is working".

He claimed Labour is "desperate for the election now because the longer we have between now and the election, the more you're going to see the plan is working".

He also insisted Mr Sunak is "definitely" the right person to be leading the partyas he ruled out a possible return to Downing Street to help the Conservatives reverse their electoral fortunes.

Asked about the prospect of going for the top job again, the former prime minister said: "No, no. I am now foreign secretary. I sit in the House of Lords. I'm not in the House of Commons. I'm part of Rishi's team.

"That is what I'm interested in doing. And that's what I'm going to do."

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If Labour wins the next election, it would end 14 years of Conservative governments under five prime ministers, including Lord Cameronwho stepped down after the UK voted to leave the European Union.

Mr Sunak last week admitted he might not win when the nation goes to the polls, but suggested the UK is on course for a hung parliament. He later insisted the outcome of the election is "not a forgone conclusion".

Most polls predict Labour is heading for a landslide victory like that secured by Tony Blair in 1997.

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