We've had the 'Platty Joobs' and the 'Cozzie Livs' – now it's the 'Genny Lex'! July 4 election becomes latest UK event to get social media nickname

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It’s less than 24 hours since Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced a general election, but social media have already come up with a catchy moniker that is dividing the nation.

Just minutes after Sunak was drenched by a downpour as he tried to make himself heard over a sound system blaring out Things Can Only Get Better, the memes discussing election day on July 4 were already being created.

And after terms including the Platty Joobs and the Cozzie Livs took social media by storm, a new nickname has come to prominence: the Genny Lex. 

As excited political journalists and activists discussed the beginning of a six-week campaign which Labour supporters will hail as a countdown to the coronation of Sir Keir Starmer, a bitter row emerged over what to call the national voting enterprise.

‘If I see one more person calling the general election the ‘genny lex’ I’m going to have a menty b [mental breakdown],’ one X user joked.

‘Genny Lex sounds like a someone who came 6th on Love Island, didn’t get any brand deals & now sells crystals on TikTok live,’ said another.

The phrase has also taken the meme community by storm: from The Simpsons to Mean Girls and Elton John, savvy internet users have already created a host of hilarious posts announcing the countdown to polling day.

But as six weeks of campaigning gets underway, some have already had enough.

‘Just to clarify I will be muting anyone who calls it a ‘genny lex’ or similar derivative’, wrote one X user.

‘Saying ‘Genny lex’ is disgusting. And I loved platty joobs,’ wrote another. 

Following Mr Sunak’s announcement last night in which he hailed the UK’s slowly improving economic situation and referenced the success of his furlough scheme during the pandemic, one social media shared a gif of Kermit the Frog having a bucket of water tipped over him.

Another shared a scene from Legally Blonde with the tagline: ‘You look like the Fourth of July!’

Elsewhere, a viewer said: ‘Was really hoping for Eat Out To Help Out 2: Eat Fast Eat Furious but I’ll take a Genny Lex instead.’

Back in the real world, all the political parties are kicking off their campaigns on Thursday with Rishi Sunak facing a major uphill climb to overturn Labour’s 25 point lead.

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He embarked on a tour of the UK today that will see him visit all four nations in just 48 hours, after launching the Conservative Campaign in London last night. 

Meanwhile Sir Keir Starmer is heading to south-east England in a sign he wants to make inroads in Tory areas.

In London, Reform UK’s leader Richard Tice is staging a press conference at 11am setting out his party’s plans. Conservatives fear they will lose votes to the right-wing party, which has come under fire in recent weeks over some of its representatives historic social media posts.

The party’s most high-profile figure, honorary president Nigel Farage, said he was thinking about whether to return to frontline politics by standing in the July 4 election.

Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey is expected to visit a target seat as he launches a campaign expected to focus on targeting Conservative-held seats following a series of eye-catching by-election successes.

Mr Sunak fired the starting gun for the election in a damp Downing Street, surprising many in Westminster who had expected an autumn polling day.

Even his own Cabinet was kept in the dark until the last minute, with Home Secretary James Cleverly telling ITV’s Peston ‘we don’t get particular advance notice’ and it was largely a matter for Mr Sunak and his inner circle.

The news caused disquiet among Tory MPs fearful of losing their jobs, and those who have already said they will not stand and are having to say goodbye to Parliament sooner than expected.

Rishi Sunak turns away after delivering his election speech at Downing Street on Wednesday

Rishi Sunak turns away after delivering his election speech at Downing Street on Wednesday

The Prime Minister’s suit took a battering as the skies opened while he gave his key speech

Steve Bray blares out Labour's 1997 campaign song Things Can Only Get Better while Rishi Sunak gives his speech

Steve Bray blares out Labour’s 1997 campaign song Things Can Only Get Better while Rishi Sunak gives his speech

Despite speculation at Westminster about a Tory rebel effort to oust Mr Sunak and call off the election, one prominent critic of the Prime Minister said it was ‘too late’ to get rid of him.

Dame Andrea Jenkyns, who has called for Mr Sunak to go, said she understood ‘other letters have been going in’ to 1922 Committee chairman Sir Graham Brady but ‘colleagues, it’s too late, I told you six months ago we should have done this’.

Just two more days of Commons business have been scheduled, during which important legislation will have to be rushed through.

Party whips from the Conservatives and Labour are holding talks to work out what outstanding legislation can become law before prorogation – the end of the current parliamentary session – on Friday.

That includes the Victims and Prisoners Bill, which includes measures to establish a compensation scheme for victims of the infected blood scandal.

In his Downing Street statement, the Prime Minister said the election would be a question of trust, warning that Sir Keir was not the man to lead the country through ‘uncertain’ times.

Sir Keir said the election would be a chance to turn the page on 14 years of Conservative rule and ‘stop the chaos’ at Westminster.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced a date for the General Election on Wednesday afternoon

Mr Sunak hopes that Consumer Prices Index inflation falling to 2.3% in April and a recovering economy will help overturn a 20-point opinion poll deficit.

It was ‘proof that the plan and priorities I set out are working’, Mr Sunak said, but he acknowledged ‘for some it might still be hard when you look at your bank balance’.

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He also highlighted that whoever was in No 10 would have to deal with a world ‘more dangerous than it has been since the end of the Cold War’ with Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine, the Israel-Hamas conflict in the Middle East, China’s efforts to ‘dominate the 21st century’ and migration ‘being weaponised by hostile states’.

He added: ‘On July 5, either Sir Keir Starmer or I will be prime minister. He has shown time and time again that he will take the easy way out and do anything to get power.

‘If he was happy to abandon all the promises he made to become Labour leader once he got the job, how can you know that he won’t do exactly the same thing if he were to become prime minister?

‘If you don’t have the conviction to stick to anything you say, if you don’t have the courage to tell people what you want to do and if you don’t have a plan, how can you possibly be trusted to lead our country, especially at this most uncertain of times?’

At a Tory rally on Wednesday night, he said ‘the only certainty with Labour is that they will run out of money’ and Sir Keir’s pledge to scrap the Rwanda plan would ‘enact a de facto amnesty for asylum seekers, making us a magnet for every illegal immigrant in Europe’.

‘In every way, Labour would make our country less secure,’ he claimed.

Tacitly acknowledging his opinion poll deficit, he said: ‘Labour want you to think that this election is over before it has even begun. But we are going to fight every day for our values and our vision and the British people are going to show Labour that they don’t take too kindly to being taken for granted.’

But Labour leader Sir Keir said: ‘If they get another five years they will feel entitled to carry on exactly as they are. Nothing will change.’

He promised a ‘new spirit of service’, putting the country before party interests.

‘I am well aware of the cynicism people hold towards politicians at the moment, but I came into politics late, having served our country as leader of the Crown Prosecution Service, and I helped the Police Service in Northern Ireland to gain the consent of all communities.’

He added service was the ‘reason, and the only reason why I am standing here now asking for your vote’.