Big night for Conservatives in Britain’s parliamentary elections
LONDON (AP) — With 508 of 650 constituencies reporting results Friday morning in Britain’s parliamentary election, the Conservatives were leading with 222 seats, according to election officials.
The opposition Labour Party has won 203 seats and the Scottish National Party 55. Eight seats have gone to the Democratic Unionists in Northern Ireland, while the Liberal Democrats won six seats and the U.K. Independence Party earned one. Thirteen seats went to other smaller parties.
An exit poll has predicted that the Conservatives will be the top party in Thursday’s vote, winning 316 of the 650 seats in the House of Commons.
Labour leader Ed Miliband has acknowledged that his party is facing likely defeat in Britain’s general election.He says “This has clearly been a very disappointing and difficult night for the Labour Party.”
Miliband won his own Doncaster North seat, but Labour looks set to win fewer than the 256 seats it held before the election. It has been all but wiped out in Scotland, a former stronghold, as voters defected in droves to the Scottish National Party.
Miliband said, “We haven’t made the gains that we’d wanted in England and Wales, and in Scotland we have seen a surge of nationalism overwhelm our party.”
He said whoever is prime minister in the next government would face the challenge of uniting Britain after a divisive campaign.