A by-election to choose a new British lawmaker for the seats of Brecon and Radnorshire will be held today.
Conservative Party chief whip Julian Smith last month moved to trigger the election after MP Chris Davies was unseated following a conviction for a false expense claim. Mr Davies has been re-selected by the Conservatives for the election, where he will face Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds, Labour’s Tom Davies, and the Brexit Party’s Des Parkinson.
The contest is the second parliamentary by-election in Wales this year and could further weaken the government’s position in the lower house. The Conservatives currently have a working majority of two votes in the chamber, with today’s vote potentially reducing PM Boris Johnson’s majority to just one.
Ms Dodds, polling at 43%, is the heavy favourite to take the seat. Chris Davies stands at a distant second at 28%. With the numbers in the lower house already tight, a loss for the Conservatives would make pushing any vision of Brexit through parliament significantly more challenging.
Meanwhile, some speculate that Mr Johnson could call a snap election in a bid to strengthen his hand ahead of the October 31 Brexit deadline. However, early elections could backfire—a reality that faced former PM Theresa May after she called a snap poll in June 2017, only to lose her majority.