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General Election 2017 - Breakfast Bulletin

UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, called the General Election on the premise of securing a personal mandate for the Brexit negotiations. As the final results trickle in, it looks like the electorate has secured her downfall.

At 10pm the exit polls signalled a hung parliament and no realistic prospect of a coalition led by either the Conservatives or Labour. Sinn Féin do not take their seats in the House of Commons and the Speaker and his three Deputies do not vote. This means that the key number of seats for any party is roughly 322. At the time of writing, the Conservatives are forecast to have a working majority but only if they can secure DUP support. Parliament is officially hung.

Clear trends in the results have been few and far between, with sizeable regional variations in the direction and quantity of swing. Labour have seen huge increases in their vote share in London and other areas which voted remain in the EU Referendum. Large Conservative majorities have been overturned in Ipswich, Reading East and Canterbury whilst bellwether seats such as Lincoln turned Labour. The Conservatives saw large increases in their vote share in swathes of the North and Scotland but only in the latter were these swings of sufficient size to take their target seats. In Wales, where the Conservatives made large gains in the local elections just one month ago, Labour have gained seats at the Conservatives’ expense.

Although for now the Conservatives remain in power, there will be a number of forced Ministerial changes. Jane Ellison, James Wharton, Simon Kirby, Gavin Barwell and perhaps most notably Conservative manifesto author Ben Gummer have all lost their seats. There have also been a number of high-profile political casualties in other parties. The SNP’s Alex Salmond and Angus Robertson have been defeated in their respective constituencies, as has former leader of the Liberal Democrats Nick Clegg. The coming hours and weeks will be a time of significant change and uncertainty.

Reports are already swirling of the Conservatives planning a change in leadership, however, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn looks secure. He may have lost this election, but he has won the battle of expectations and has improved on Labour’s result in 2015, both in terms of swing and seats.

Despite Corbyn winning the battle of expectations there have only been two clear winners. Of the pollsters, Survation had an excellent night. Turnout was the key differential between the polling predictions and at nearing 70% they got it broadly correct. The other winner was the Leader of the Scottish Conservatives Ruth Davidson, who has led her party to an eleven seat gain.

Regardless of whether May survives the week, the UK parliament is facing a period of legislative paralysis. Controversial Conservative manifesto pledges such as grammar schools and social care reform face no prospect of progress. More urgently, for Brexit the ramifications are potentially huge. Negotiations are due to begin in a matter of days and it is unclear who will be leading the UK Government. In terms of the makeup of the House of Commons, early analysis indicates there is unlikely to be a parliamentary majority for exiting the single market, let alone securing the complex legislative programme of transferring EU law into UK law.

The last 24 hours have seen yet another political shock. May has won this election and yet she has lost. Corbyn has lost this election and yet he has won. The UK has returned to two-party politics with May securing the most Conservative votes since 1992 and Corbyn securing the most Labour votes since 1997. As the dust begins to settle, both parties are already on manoeuvres. If the UK is to be led by a majority Government at any point during the Brexit negotiations, another election will need to be called. The German Federal Elections are scheduled for September 24th. The opportune window for another election is short.Regardless of whether May survives the week, the UK parliament is facing a period of legislative paralysis. Controversial Conservative manifesto pledges such as grammar schools and social care reform face no prospect of progress. More urgently, for Brexit the ramifications are potentially huge. Negotiations are due to begin in a matter of days and it is unclear who will be leading the UK Government. In terms of the makeup of the House of Commons, early analysis indicates there is unlikely to be a parliamentary majority for exiting the single market, let alone securing the complex legislative programme of transferring EU law into UK law.

The last 24 hours have seen yet another political shock. May has won this election and yet she has lost. Corbyn has lost this election and yet he has won. The UK has returned to two-party politics with May securing the most Conservative votes since 1992 and Corbyn securing the most Labour votes since 1997. As the dust begins to settle, both parties are already on manoeuvres. If the UK is to be led by a majority Government at any point during the Brexit negotiations, another election will need to be called. The German Federal Elections are scheduled for September 24th. The opportune window for another election is short.

Source: Grayling

Last Modified: Friday 09 June 2017 04:22
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