DUP could be kingmaker for new Conservative Government

DUP could be kingmaker for new Conservative Government

The latest exit poll shows the Conservatives in the lead with over 300 seats, and it predicts that David Cameron will be 10 seats short of a majority.

The DUP showed a strong performance as results flooded in from polling stations in the North, and if the poll accurately predicts final vote tallies, the DUP could be launched into a powerful position as a potential coalition partner with the Conservatives.

The poll, compiled by British broadcasters, envisions Cameron's party taking 316 seats, Labour 239, the Scottish National Party 58, the Liberal Democrats 10 and UKIP two.

The golden number for a majority is technically 326 seats, but it is effectively 323 because the Speaker's seat does not count and Sinn Fein do not take their seats.

Jeffrey Donaldson was the first to secure his seat in the North, when he was re-elected for the DUP with 47.9% of the vote, accumulating 19,055 votes in Lagan Valley.

Mark Durcan (SDLP), Pat Doherty (Sinn Féin) , Ian Paisley (DUP), Danny Kinahan UUP, Gavin Robinson (DUP), David Simpson (DUP), Sammy Wilson (DUP), Sylvia Hermon (Independent), Paul Maskey (Sinn Féin) have all secured seats so far.

The runaway success of the Scottish National Party (SNP) could inspire seismic shifts in the UK political landscape.

Mhairi Black, for the SNP was elected the youngest MP in the UK since the 1600's.

The 20-year-old student defeated Labour's UK campaign coordinator and shadow foreign secretary Douglas Alexander, which kept any expected salve from soothing Labour's painful losses in Scotland this morning.

“What people are looking for is change," Black said on winning her first national election. "People want an end to austerity and the SNP were the only ones offering that."

The SNPs drive to end austerity clearly resonated with Scottish voters. The SNP now look destined for a landmark election, and they may be the third biggest party in the UK.

SNP leader Nicola Sturgoen said that Labour were her party's desired coalition partner, and she criticised the party for not delivering the vote south of the border.

"I want to work with Labour to lock the Tories out. I still want to see how the results turn out," she said.

"All the indications are that this represents a historic shift for Scotland," said Sturgeon.

The SNP's apparent success has already incited questions as to how their numbers will influence government.

The SNP have claimed a firm commitment to staying in the EU, which may mitigate somewhat against a Brexit, which would have huge ramifications for the Irish economy.

Former nationalist leader and former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond told ITV that if the exit polls, which predict the SNP securing all but one seat in Scotland, were correct, ”it certainly leaves David Cameron, if that were the case, with no legitimacy whatsoever up in Scotland“.

''There's going to be a lion roaring tonight, a Scottish lion, and it's going to roar with a voice that no government of whatever political complexion is going to be able to ignore. I think it's going to be a resounding voice, a clear voice, a united voice from Scotland, and I think that is a very good thing,'' said Salmond.

The SNP's huge electoral success would certainly lend legitimacy to another referendum on Scottish independence.

The Liberal Democrats have been the biggest casualties of the 2015 general election so far. Not even Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg's seat looks entirely secure, and a major decimation of the party is now expected.

Labour have also had a disappointing election so far.

After Conservatives held Battersea with an improved vote, a senior party source said: “Labour threw resources at this seat and it was on their target list but the Conservative majority increased from 5,977 to 7,938, and there was a 1.7% swing from Labour to Conservatives.”

With the SNP heading for a landslide in Scotland at the expense of her party, Tessa Jowell said there were ``lessons that the Labour Party has to draw from the sheer scale by which the Scottish people have turned away'' from them.

Asked if Ed Miliband could remain as leader, she told the BBC: “You can’t lay all this on Ed Miliband.

“What has happened in Scotland to Labour has not just happened in the last three of four years.

“We do not need a new leader and this is not the time to talk about whether we need a new leader or not.

“What we need is to understand, if the exit poll is borne out, why our expectations were so wide of the mark in relation to the actual result.”

Former Labour leader Neil Kinnock said the Tories could do well because “there are enough people who are willing to accept that myth and then think they are voting for their own security by voting for Conservative candidates”.

“The awful thing is, it’s not simply those people who, relatively innocently, are working against their own interests,” Lord Kinnock told the BBC.

“The real price will be paid by those who truly are innocent.”

Asked about how things were looking for Labour, he said: “If it continues like this it’s one of great disappointment, not so much for the party, but for what it means for millions of people in Britain.”

He said voters were swayed by “mood and self-delusion”.

“Any opposition to that established attitude, any radicalism, any effort to undertake a different path – not just by Labour but indeed by other parties – is always going to have difficulty countering that established myth, and it appears to be the case in the 2015 election,” he added.

The Green Party said it had received 4.4% of the vote in the first six constituencies to declare, up from 1% in 2010.

UKIP have not done as well as the party had expected. Leader Nigel Farage may not win his own seat. The controversial politician stated before the election that he would resign as party leader if was unsuccessful in his electoral bid.

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