AS PEOPLE across the UK wake up to the news of a general election on December 12, MPs and activists have already begun talking up their parties' chances.

On Tuesday night, MPs voted in favour of the December 12 general election 438 to 20; a majority of 418; after rejecting a Labour amendment to hold it three days earlier.

On BBC Radio 4's Today programme, senior Labour backbencher Ben Bradshaw said his party would do better in the election than some may think, and said Labour would be "totally united" as candidates and MPs.

Members of the party had been divided over whether a second EU referendum, or a general election, would be the best course of action to pursue.

"The reason that we thought the referendum was the best way is a democratic reason," Mr Bradshaw said. "In a binary issue like Brexit, the only way of resolving that with democratic legitimacy is to hold another referendum and Labour is the only party offering that now in the general election.

"That's why you have to vote Labour if you want to stop Brexit."

Laura Parker, national co-ordinator for the Labour grassroots movement Momentum, was asked on the Today programme if she would be giving advice on voting tactically.

She said: "We will be advising all of our members to get out there and campaign for Labour, wherever they are in the country.

"It's only a Labour government that will both end this Tory Brexit madness and end austerity and help us rebuild Britain."

Meanwhile, in the Conservative camp, prime minister Boris Johnson has restored the party whip to 10 of the 21 MPs who voted to block a no-deal Brexit.

One of those MPs re-admitted to the Tory party, Ed Vaizey, was asked what he had to do to be welcomed back.

South Wales Argus: Ed Vaizey, Conservative MP for Wantage.Ed Vaizey, Conservative MP for Wantage.

He told the Today Programme: "Well the way I put it is, I had an argument with the prime minister about no deal, and I voted against him to try and get no deal off the table.

"But I have voted with the Government ever since."

He said this was not a case of him "sucking up to the prime minister and trying to get the whip back", but because he did not have arguments with him about his deal or timetable for his deal.

"So I suspect that is why I've got the whip back and others haven't," he said.

One of those former Tory MPs who have not been restored to the party is Dominic Grieve, who said he assumed the Tories would put a candidate up against him in his constituency of Beaconsfield (Buckinghamshire).

South Wales Argus: Dominic Grieve, Independent MP for Beaconsfield. Picture: Anita Ross MarshallDominic Grieve, Independent MP for Beaconsfield. Picture: Anita Ross Marshall

Mr Grieve told the Today programme: "I will run as an independent. I've made that decision. I have no idea what the outcome will be.

"Logically, I probably ought to lose. It's a very safe Conservative seat.

"And if normal loyalties prevail then a Conservative candidate will be elected against me.

"But I think my constituents are entitled to a choice."

The Liberal Democrats are campaigning on a staunch anti-Brexit platform.

Party leader Jo Swinson said the Lib Dems' "stop Brexit" message was resonating with people who voted 'Remain' in the 2016 EU referendum.

South Wales Argus: Jo Swinson, Liberal Democrat leader and MP for East Dunbartonshire. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA WireJo Swinson, Liberal Democrat leader and MP for East Dunbartonshire. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

"People recognise our consistency and standing up for what we believe in," she told the Today programme, adding: "I don't think that the choice that we are being offered between Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn is anywhere near good enough.

"Neither of those men are fit to lead our country and be prime minister.

"And I know there are millions of people out there who are longing for a positive alternative that is looking to the future."

Ms Swinson said polling showed the Lib Dems were "within a small swing" of winning "hundreds of seats".