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DATE PUBLISHED: 2017/6/9 - 15:23:43
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Britain in Turmoil after Conservatives Loose Parliamentary Majority
 Britain in Turmoil after Conservatives Loose Parliamentary Majority

Britain has been plunged into political turmoil after the Conservative party lost crucial parliamentary majority as Brexit talks loom.

Prime Minister Theresa May faces an uncertain future after her election gamble backfired with the opposition Labor Party, led by leftist Jeremy Corbyn performing much better than polls predicted.

With 649 of 650 seats declared, the Conservatives had won 318 seats. A surprise resurgence by the Labor Party gave the main opposition party 261 seats.

The voters put the Scottish National Party (SNP) on 35 as the third-biggest group in the new House of Commons, the Liberal Democrats on 12, and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) on 10. The pro-Brexit UK Independence Party (UKIP) failed to win a single seat.

No single party will be able to secure an overall majority, with a hung parliament now guaranteed.

Strategy backfired

May's decision to call an early election cost a handful of her ministers to lose their seats including Ben Gummer, the architect of the Tory manifesto, and Jane Ellison, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury. But in her speech on Friday morning she signaled that the Conservatives hoped to hang on in government. Senior Conservatives have confirmed that Theresa May has no intention of resigning this morning.

Pundits say the UK is headed for a hung parliament which means no political party wins enough seats to secure a majority in the House of Commons. After the disastrous election results that have left May clinging onto power, she has been forced to pursue a deal with the DUP to stay in Downing Street. The coalition would take her over the threshold needed to obtain a House of Commons majority. After the debacle, it is difficult to see how Theresa May will be able to remain as Conservative leader for long.

She called the snap election, hoping to boost her mandate for Brexit negotiations but the Tories actually lost seats and fell below the 326 needed to form a majority government.

Some senior ministers are furious with the prime minister, and likely to seek to exact concessions in exchange for continuing to back her leadership.

May has said sorry to the Tory MPs and ministers who lost their seats as a result of her decision to call a snap general election which cost the Conservatives their majority.

The Conservatives' share of the vote stood just above 42%, with Labor just over 40%. Corbyn's aides said the jump in the party's share since Ed Miliband's 30% in 2015 was the largest between two general elections for any party since 1945.

Corbyn urges May to resign

Speaking on Friday, Corbyn said has said that he had "changed the face of British politics" as his party defied the polls and made a significant election breakthrough. Analysis believe Labour had benefited from a strong turnout among young voters.

The party's success saw it almost completely wipe out the Tories in London and more than double majorities in seats that were previously considered marginal. Corbyn called for May to resign, telling her to "make way for a government that will be truly representative."

Political analysts doubt a Conservative minority government with support from the DUP would last over the long term, and think a second election is likely.

Elsewhere, May said on Friday Brexit talks would begin on 19 June as planned, but officials in Brussels were braced for a delay.

Donald Tusk, the European council president, reminded London that article 50 of the Lisbon treaty had already been triggered and talks would therefore have to be concluded by March 2019.

 

LINK: https://www.ansarpress.com/english/6986


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