UK Exit Polls Show Stumble For Theresa May In Snap Election

Pauline Gross
June 9, 2017

Britain Prime Minister Theresa May on Friday insisted that she has no intention of resigning despite her disastrous election as the United Kingdom voted for a hung parliament.

As the June 8 poll ended in a hung parliament, with no party holding an absolute majority in the House of Commons, Mrs May pledged the Tories would offer "stability" as the largest party with the most votes.

Whether she goes or stays, May began the campaign touting her own "strong and stable" leadership. Labour's radical tax-and-spend manifesto struck a chord with a public tired of austerity, especially among younger voters priced out of the housing market and anxious about their future employment.

Jeremy Corbyn, in contrast, had a good campaign.

The result is a personal disaster for May.

Corbyn was elected as Labour leader following the resignation of Ed Miliband, who failed to deliver victory at the 2015 general election.

And Tim Farron's party took Bath back from the Conservatives and regained Caithness, Sutherland & Easter Ross and Edinburgh West, which were lost to the SNP in 2015.

So she flung the dice - and marched off a political cliff.

Following the General Election in 2010, when no party had a majority, Gordon Brown remained as prime minister while the talks were taking place.

Ukip leader Paul Nuttall faced humiliation in Boston & Skegness, where he came in a distant third, and the eurosceptic party lost its only Westminster seat in Clacton. Their tally of seats was set to increase only marginally.

The main issues for United Kingdom voters tired of seven years of austerity government were cuts to public services, the future of the country's National Health Service, growing wealth inequality and stagnant or falling real wages.

"There's no coalition, there's no deals".

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The talks with Brussels' chief negotiator Michel Barnier are set to kick off on June 19 - 11 - just days after the election . Corbyn, meanwhile, accused Conservatives of undermining Britain's security by cutting the number of police on the streets.

"And I would have thought perhaps a good gesture from Parliament would be to vote now to agree that all European Union nationals can remain in Britain'".

The survey predicted the Conservatives will get 314 seats and the Labour Party 266.

Support from Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) would allow her Conservatives to reach the 326 seats needed for a majority in parliament.

Until a coalition government is decided, May remains prime minister - unless she opts to resign.

He questioned Mrs May's position, saying: "Whatever the true result, the Conservative party needs a leader that believes in Brexit". She unexpectedly seized power last summer in the wake of David Cameron losing the European Union referendum and resigning.

Corbyn said the early results showed May had lost her mandate and called for her to resign.

British voters went to the polls Thursday for an election envisioned to be dominated by the country's pending departure from the European Union but that ended up focusing on global terrorism following attacks in London and Manchester. Among the casualties was Alex Salmond, a former first minister of Scotland and one of the party's highest-profile lawmakers.

After the exit poll emerged at 10pm, Evening Standard editor, George Osborne, described the night as potentially "catastrophic" for Mrs May.

"If a hung parliament forces a cross party compromise it could lead to a softer Brexit strategy, and may turn out to be positive in the long run after some serious initial confusion", said Kallum Pickering, economist at Berenberg bank.

David Davis, the U.K. Brexit secretary, admitted as much.

"What's happened is people have said they have had quite enough of austerity", he said, adding it was time for a government that is "truly representative of all the people of this country". Clearly, voters have not accepted it.

Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka of the Czech Republic told Czech Television that "now it will be necessary to wait for who will form a government and what this government will bring to negotiations over Brexit", Reuters reports.

Other reports by GizPress

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