Memories of the last general election at Christmas – Yorkshire Post Letters

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From: Reverend PN Hayward, Allonby, Maryport, Cumbria.

THE 2019 general election will be the first at Christmas since 1923 – 96 years ago. The prevailing season spirit of feeling good and goodwill might favour the party in power. But that did not happen in 1923 when Stanley Baldwin needlessly called for a general election.

Stanley Baldwin was the last Prime Minister to call a Christmas election.

Stanley Baldwin was the last Prime Minister to call a Christmas election.

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He lost 86 seats, the result being Conservative 258, Labour 191, and Liberal 158 – the nearest approach to a three party tie in British political history.

He was ousted by a combination of the first Labour Government under Ramsay MacDonald, with Liberal support. The combination collapsed less than a year later due to the fraudulent Zinoviev letter, said to have been sent by the Russian politician to Communist and Labour leaders advocating a revolution.

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At the subsequent election, Baldwin this time won 412 seats. The Labour party never had an overall majority in the Commons until the 1945 post-war electoral landslide – 21 years after the first Labour government.