Election

Read the latest General Election news, views and analysis.

Full text: I’ll govern ‘unburdened by doctrine’

I have just returned from Buckingham Palace, where I accepted an invitation from His Majesty the King to form the next government of this great nation. I want to thank the outgoing prime minister, Rishi Sunak. His achievement as the first British-Asian prime minister of our country – the extra effort that that will have required should not be underestimated by anyone, and we pay tribute to that today. And we also recognise the dedication and hard work he brought to his leadership. But now our country has voted decisively for change, for national renewal and a return of politics to public service. When the gap between the sacrifices made

How the Tories changed Britain

The late Roger Scruton (whose wrongful sacking as a housing adviser by a Tory minister in 2019 was a sign that things were badly wrong) defined the fundamental issue: ‘There can be no democracy without a demos, a “we” united by a shared sense of belonging.’ How has the demos changed over 14 years of Conservative government? The ‘we’ is weaker than when David Cameron and Nick Clegg were promoting a Big Society. We are in a pessimistic mood in which saying that ‘nothing works’ has become a catchphrase. Politicians are despised. The party that has governed for so long cannot avoid responsibility.  The government seemed scared to defend their only truly historic

The triumph of Sinn Fein

Sinn Fein has consolidated its position as the biggest political party in Northern Ireland. It retained its seven seats and, as a result of DUP reversals, is now Northern Ireland’s largest party at Westminster. Sinn Fein were very close to winning the East Londonderry seat from the DUP – which went to various recounts – but the DUP held on with a majority of 179. So the result could have been even better for them.  Northern Ireland now has an alphabet soup of parties representing it Already the largest party at the Stormont Assembly and on Northern Ireland’s councils, it is quite the hat-trick for Sinn Fein and its leader Michelle

Why the Lib Dems did so well

It has been quite a 14 years for the Liberal Democrats – from the coalition in 2010 to near total wipe-out in 2015. Things barely improved in the two elections after that. They even managed to lose then-leader Jo Swinson’s seat in 2019. Five years on, the party has secured 71 seats, a gain of 63 and the party’s highest ever total. They haven’t quite managed to become the official opposition but return to the new parliament as the third-largest party. The Lib Dems have benefited from ruthless targeting One of their gains includes David Cameron’s old seat of Witney on a swing of over 15 per cent. They also

Full text: I will resign as Conservative leader

Good morning. I will shortly be seeing His Majesty the King to offer my resignation as Prime Minister. To the country, I would like to say, first and foremost, I am sorry. I have given this job my all. But you have sent a clear signal that the government of the United Kingdom must change, and yours is the only judgment that matters. I have heard your anger, your disappointment, and I take responsibility for this loss. This is a difficult day at the end of a number of difficult days To all the Conservative candidates and campaigners who worked tirelessly but without success, I am sorry that we could

Why Muslim voters turned their backs on Starmer’s Labour

In an otherwise jubilant night for Labour, the party has performed badly in areas with a high proportion of Muslim voters. So far, Labour has lost five seats with large Muslim populations – four to independent candidates and one to the Conservatives. The party’s vote is down on average by 11 points in seats where more than 10 per cent of the population identify as Muslim, with pro-Gaza candidates making significant inroads. Labour has been wary throughout this campaign of the impact that the Middle East crisis would have on its vote in urban areas with significant numbers of Muslim voters. It followed comments last year by the Labour leader, Sir Keir

Kate Andrews

Labour passes its first test with the markets

Markets don’t like surprises. And the election results, while explosive, are not a surprise – or at least the winner isn’t. Labour has secured a substantial majority, as markets had been expecting the party to do from the start of the election. No surprise this morning means no immediate jitters, as the result was already priced in. Sterling is slightly up, by 0.1 per cent, hovering around $1.28. The FTSE 100 is up 0.4 per cent since markets opened this morning. Most notably, housebuilding stocks are on the up. The strong speculation that Labour will use its first days in power to announce a planning overhaul has given the market

Nick Cohen

Why conservatives should get behind Starmer

The Conservatives are going down to one of their worst defeats ever. The opposition has come from nowhere to absolutely destroy them. It ought to be one of those rare moments in British history when the centre-left can celebrate crushing a Tory party, that drives us to despair and rage in equal measure.  Speaking at a victory rally at 5 a.m. this morning, Keir Starmer told his supporters, ‘We can look forward to walk into the morning, the sunlight of hope, pale at first, but getting stronger through the day’. It was not quite as poetic as Wordsworth’s greeting of the French Revolution ‘Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive/But to

Isabel Hardman

Jeremy Corybn and the rise of the Gaza independents

A counterpoint to the main story of Labour’s election victory is the way Gaza has cost the party at least five seats – and ran it very close in others. Jon Ashworth’s shock loss to independent Gaza campaigner Shockat Adam in Leicester South was the most high profile but there were three other losses to independents standing on a similar platform. Jeremy Corbyn was returned as an independent in Islington North, referencing Gaza in both his campaign literature and acceptance speech. It won’t just be on Gaza that Starmer now comes under pressure to move Khalid Mahmood, a Labour MP who has campaigned against Islamist extremism, was beaten in Birmingham

Kate Andrews

Voters never forgave Liz Truss for her mini-Budget

Tonight was the first time since Liz Truss’s 49-day premiership that voters got to have their say on exactly what happened back in 2022, and what’s happened since. The verdict is in: Truss has suffered a devastating defeat in South West Norfolk, going from a 25,000 seat majority in 2019 (one of the safest Tory seats in the country) to losing to Labour candidate Terry Jermy, with a difference of just over 600 votes. The 26 per cent voter swing from Tories to Labour made Truss the first former prime minister to lose their seat in almost 90 years. Were this any other MP, it would be easy to chalk

The game is up for the SNP after its election meltdown

Every election is historic in its own way, and of course the top line this 2024 general election is Labour’s humongous parliamentary majority. Though never can a landslide have been delivered with so little voter enthusiasm. But something equally significant happened in the wee small hours of the morning. For, an existential threat that has arguably hung over the United Kingdom for nigh on twenty years simply evaporated. The all-powerful Scottish National Party collapsed in ruins, losing all but nine of its forty-eight Scottish MPs. This is worse than even the most pessimistic poll forecasts. The Scottish National Party, it seemed, could not lose Yet, less than a decade ago the Scottish

Looking to the past won’t help the Tories navigate their future

These are going to be dark days of introspection for Conservatives. And, as they try to make sense of the 2024 election, some will look to the party’s past to put it into historical perspective. There is, however, no precedent for how awful the result was for the party in terms of vote share and seats won: it really was that bad. Yet, as a comfort amongst the wreckage, but also an inspiration for future effort, some party members will likely alight upon earlier examples of how the Conservatives recovered from cataclysmic defeat. Of those modern instances – 1906, 1945 and 1997 – 1945 is by far the most appealing.

Patrick O'Flynn

Will the Tories finally get the message?

Can it just be a coincidence that most of the leading figures of the Tory left lost their seats, while the coming women and men of the right largely held on? Kemi Badenoch, Robert Jenrick and Suella Braverman all made it back to the Commons while whole phalanxes of would-be leadership contenders from the ‘One Nation’ wing of the party fell by the wayside. Penny Mordaunt, Grant Shapps, Alex Chalk and Gillian Keegan were among the biggest casualties. The coming civil war for the soul of the Tories is shaping up to be a humdinger Perhaps having anti-woke and mass-migration sceptic credentials helped those on the right minimise the Reform

Jake Wallis Simons

Why Jews returned to Labour

Two weeks before the general election, the Jewish Chronicle commissioned a Survation poll to map the voting intentions of British Jews. To our surprise, we found that, unlike the rest of the country, the Tories were just ahead in the community – by nine percentage points. The stain of the Corbyn years, it seemed, had not yet been fully erased. The following week, however, a second, larger poll was published. This one, by Jewish Policy Research, put Labour 16 points ahead. It was against this background of ambiguity that amid high drama overnight, the Jewish heartland seat of Finchley fell to Labour’s Sarah Sackman, who defeated the Conservative candidate, Alex Deane,

John Ferry

The SNP’s catastrophic defeat is an opportunity for Scotland

Like the wider UK result, the SNP getting a hammering in yesterday’s general election was largely predicted by the polls. But this has not lessened the impact of seeing the many well-kent faces of high-profile former SNP MPs being given their marching orders by the Scottish electorate. One after another they fell, and with them the hubris that has defined the party since 2014 melted away.  Popularity in democracies tends to be cyclical, but the SNP has defined itself not as a mere political party but as the beating heart of a national liberation movement and, as such, able to transcend political gravity. It also has a particular emotional pull

Katy Balls

The Tory blame game begins

As Labour declares victory in the general election, Rishi Sunak is on course to preside over the Tories’ worst ever general election result. As the results pour in, the Conservative losses are piling up with Defence Secretary Grant Shapps, Education Secretary Gillian Keegan and Chief Whip Simon Hart among the senior members of Sunak’s team to lose their seat. Sunak and Jeremy Hunt may have clung on but the Tory party is losing all over the place – from the north-east and Wales to Surrey and Oxfordshire. The recriminations are well under way On current results, it looks as though Labour has won around 36 per cent of the vote but

Steerpike

Full list: Rees-Mogg and Mordaunt among big beasts felled in Tory wipeout

They’ve been some of the most dominant figures in British politics of the past five years – but now they’re out of the Commons. Former prime minister Lis Truss has lost her seat. And among the other high-profile casualties are the Defence Secretary Grant Shapps and Penny Mordaunt, the Leader of the House of Commons. Lord Chancellor Alex Chalk, Education Secretary Gillian Keegan and Michelle Donelan, the Science Secretary, have also been given the boot. Below is a list of all the ministers who have lost their seats thus far:

We will govern as a changed Labour party

Keir Starmer has given a speech in Central London early this morning after winning the 2024 general election. Below is a full transcript of his remarks: We did it. You campaigned for it, you fought for it, you voted for it, and now it has arrived. Change begins now. And it feels good, I have to be honest. Four and a half years of work, changing the party. This is what it is for. A changed Labour party, ready to serve our country, ready to restore Britain to the service of working people.  And across our country, people will be waking up to the news, relieved that a weight has