That term could only be curtailed if the Commons voted with a two-thirds majority for a snap election, or if it passed a motion of no confidence in the government. There were also a number of abstentions.
With Conservatives as much as 21 points ahead of Labour in recent opinion polls, May is calculating she can increase her slim majority of just 17 lawmakers and win a strong mandate for her own policies on Brexit, tax, and education.
"She looked across the despatch box and could not resist the political equivalent of taking candy from a baby", Tim Farron, leader of the Liberal Democrats, said in a debate in the Commons before the vote.
May became prime minister without winning an election in July a year ago following the resignation of David Cameron after millions of Britons went against his advice and voted to leave the EU. Osborne, who has five other jobs as well as a large family fortune, gave the scoop to the Evening Standard, where he is the new editor, although he missed the deadline for the print edition.
British Prime Minister Theresa May has called for an early election. She appealed to all MP's to vote for the general election as she asked the representatives of their constituencies to place their trust in her.
Mrs May also urged the British people to put their faith in her.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May's call for an early general election was a display of "cheap opportunism" to defeat the Labour Party and win an absolute majority for her government, says a British academic.
A European Commission spokesman said the "real political" negotiations on Brexit will start after the election.
The Prime Minister easily cleared the hurdle needed under the Fixed Term Parliament Act to bring the poll forward from the scheduled date of 2020.
He said the British government will have "no say" on the issue because it is not part of the Brexit negotiations, but "will have to ease the burden of relocating" staff to European Union cities.
But, while May is trying to focus the election debate on Brexit, Corbyn is looking to harness the powerful anti-establishment mood revealed by the European Union referendum, which has roots stretching back to the 2007-9 financial crisis.
Khan said, "I will be fighting hard for every Labour vote over the coming weeks - a Labour government is in the best interests of all Londoners and the whole country".
She said on Tuesday she had "reluctantly" come to the decision to call for an early election because of political division in Westminster, suggesting that opposition parties were trying to thwart her plans for leaving the EU.
Elmar Brok, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's centre-right Christian Democrats, told Germany's ARD television Wednesday that May could derive from a new, stronger mandate an "ability to compromise". "I hope the former will be the case".
A former Taoiseach says he's not sure Theresa May will get the large majority she's looking for in a new United Kingdom election. He added: "If it isn't a triumphant success, it will be to some extent a personal failure". May and defended her decision as a courageous move that showed the prime minister was deeply invested in the security and stability of Britain.
Though May has been cautious in detailing her Brexit aspirations, traders think a big victory for her in the election could give her ammunition in dealing with those within her own Conservative Party who are urging a complete, "hard" divorce from the European Union - even if that means new tariffs and an exclusion from the bloc's huge single market.
She rightly says the country needs a positive response for the Brexit negotiations, repeating that the decision to leave Europe is irreversible.