Rishi Sunak suggests general election in second half of yearPublished2 minutes agocommentsCommentsShareclose panelShare pageCopy linkAbout sharingImage source, PA MediaBy Chas GeigerPolitical reporterRishi Sunak has appeared to rule out holding a general election in the spring. During a visit to Mansfield, the prime minister said: “My working assumption is we’ll have a general election in the second half of this year.” In recent weeks, there has been speculation that Mr Sunak might call an election in May. One has to be held by January 2025 at the latest. Labour has claimed that a spring vote is the “worst kept secret in Parliament”. And the Liberal Democrats have called on Mr Sunak to hold the vote in May rather than trying to “cling on” to power for the rest of the year.But Mr Sunak told broadcasters on a visit to a youth centre: “I’ve got lots that I want to get on with.”Follow live: Sunak’s announcement and Starmer’s new year speechHe declined to rule out a May election categorically, but repeated his intention to go for later in the year.”I want to keep going, managing the economy well and cutting people’s taxes.”But I also want to keep tackling illegal migration. “I’m determined to keep delivering for the British people,” the prime minister said. He acknowledged that the last 12 months had been “tricky”, but promised a “better year” ahead.”Look, 2023, I’ll be honest, it wasn’t the easiest of years, for any of us, it wasn’t an easy year for our country.”The nation was still dealing with the legacy of Covid, the war in Ukraine and the conflict in Gaza, he said. But he added: “I’m going to tell you, I know that 2024 is going to be a better year, I want to make sure that all you believe 2024 is going to be a better year too.”Earlier, in a speech in Bristol, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, set out what he called “Project Hope” for a “downtrodden Britain”. He said the public were right to be “anti-Westminster” after 14 years of Conservative rule, but his party was offering “a decade of national renewal”. Related TopicsConservative PartyRishi SunakLabour PartyLiberal Democrats