— BBC Daily Politics and Sunday Politics (@daily_politics) July 1, 2018
During the weekend the Labour leader was talking about forcing an early election over Brexit. What he didn’t say was exactly how this would come about because as things stand at the moment the Commons electoral arithmetic is very much against him.
While Labour has sometimes acted as though it won in June last year the fact is that the party ended up 56 MPs behind the Conservatives. The total of non conservative MPs is simply not enough to give it a majority over the Conservatives and the DUP if ever it came to a confidence vote on the floor of the House of Commons.
Unless we get a mad rush of by-elections in Tory seats which the party loses there is nothing in the foreseeable future that’s going to change the basic elecroral facts.
Under the Fixed Term Parliament Act the only way that an opposition can force an early election is by moving a vote of no confidence in the government which is not rescinded within 2 weeks.
The only source of MPs to top up the anti-Conservative contingent to secure a majority is the Conservative Party itself. Corbyn requires Tory defectors and those most probably would come from the small but loud force of remainers.
Only problem here is that the likes of Ken Clarke and Anna Soubry are not likely to be enamoured by the considerable equivocation that the LAB leadership under Corbyn has shown over Brexit.
So Corbyn’s own position on the referendum outcome could hinder any effort to bring the government down and cause an election that he wants.