As the DUP lost its influential position of holding the balance of power at Westminster, the leader of British Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, has signaled his intention to stand down as Labour leader in early 2020.
Commentators were surprised at the margin of the Tory victory, aided by their succinct vow to the British electorate to ‘get Brexit done’, as well as the failure of the opposition parties to unite on their position.
Mr Johnson’s Conservative Party won 365 seats while Labour suffered heavy losses, taking just 203 seats, while the Liberal Democrats also declined, with party leader Jo Swinson losing her seat in Scotland.
Responding to a disastrous night for Labour, which saw a string of its strongholds fall to the Tories, Mr Corbyn said he would not be leading the party into another general election.
Speaking about the timetable for him to leave, Mr Corbyn indicated it would be in the early part of next year.
He added: “I have pride in our manifesto that we put forward, and all the policies we put forward, which actually had huge public support. But this election was taken over ultimately by Brexit and we as a party represent people who voted both Remain and Leave.
“My whole strategy was to reach out beyond the Brexit divide to try and bring people together, because ultimately the country has to come together.”
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar welcomed Johnson’s outright majority after Thursday’s election.
“First of all, I want to congratulate Prime Minister Johnson, it’s an enormous victory for him on a personal level and a very clear result for his party,” he said.
“It’s a positive thing that we have decisive outcome in Britain in their elections, we had for a few years a parliament that wasn’t able to form a majority around anything, now we have a majority in the House of Commons to ratify the Withdrawal Agreement, and next steps will be to ratify that agreement which guarantees no border between north and south, the protection of the common travel area and British and Irish citizens rights will be protected.
“I’m keen to work very hard with Prime Minister Johnson to get the Executive and Assembly up and running again in Northern Ireland, that’s absolutely crucial now and has to be a key priority in the next few weeks.
“Then we go on to the next phase of Brexit which will be negotiating a mighty new partnership between the EU and UK, and I think that can be done.”
Long-standing DUP MP Sammy Wilson, who retained his East Antrim seat with a reduced majority, raised eyebrows when he admitted the loss of his party’s influence in Brexit could be beneficial for Britain.
“Obviously we’d have preferred to be in a situation we were in the last parliament where we did have the influence and where it was fairly marginal, however for the country it probably wasn’t a great thing because no decisions could be made,” he said.
“I still wouldn’t be totally dismayed insofar as a big majority could actually mean that Boris Johnson can go in and be fairly bullish with the EU when it comes to negotiations, and if he does do that then many of the problems the current deal is going to cause Northern Ireland could disappear.”