LONDON (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Boris Johnson could see his working majority in parliament reduced to just one when voters in a rural Welsh parliamentary seat go to the polls on Thursday in his first electoral test as leader.
The pro-European Union Liberal Democrats are the bookmakers’ favorites to win the vote in Brecon and Radnorshire, triggered when Conservative lawmaker Chris Davies was ousted by a petition of constituents after being convicted of falsifying expenses.
Brecon - Region - Outnumber - People - Times
Brecon is a region where sheep outnumber people many times over and where the prospect of steep EU tariffs being slapped on its Welsh lamb exports in a no-deal Brexit have prompted widespread concern among farmers.
Johnson’s government already relies on the support of a small Northern Irish party for its wafer-thin majority, with just a handful of rebels in his own Conservatives needed to lose key votes – as his predecessor Theresa May repeatedly found.
May - Brexit - Deal - EU - Times
May stepped down after her Brexit deal with the EU was rejected three times by parliament.
Johnson has said he plans to renegotiate that deal but that Britain will leave the bloc on Oct. 31 with or without an agreement, potentially setting himself up for a fight with parliament, which has pledged to try to block a no-deal exit.
Liberal - Democrats - Seat - Brecon - Davies
The Liberal Democrats held the seat of Brecon from 1997 until 2015 when it was won by Davies. In the 2017 snap election he held the seat with a majority of just over 8,000 votes and is running again for the Conservatives on Thursday.
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