UK general election live

A small recovery for the Conservatives, but a Labour landslide still imminent. Also covered: the French election and US post-debate polls.

Live Commentary

11:24am There’s still one seat left to declare, a large rural Scottish seat that’s expected to go to the Lib Dems. That final seat is expected to declare at 7:30pm AEST today. I will post final results from the UK and Scotland after that declaration. Tomorrow I will have a post on the French parliamentary election runoffs.

8:01am Saturday Northern Ireland’s 18 seats split seven Sinn Fein (steady since 2019), five Democratic Unionists (down three), two Social Democratic and Labour (steady), one Alliance (steady), one Ulster Unionist (up one), one Traditional Unionist (up one) and one independent (up one). Vote shares were 27% SF (up 4), 22% DUP (down 9), 11% SDLP (down 4), 15% Alliance (down 2), 12% UUP (up 0.5) and 6% TUV (new).

6:39pm I’ve done an article for The Conversation on the UK results. The key takeaway is that, while Labour won a seat landslide, their vote share of 33.8% was only ten points ahead of the Tories, when final polls had them 18 points up, and it trailed the combined Tory and Reform vote share (38.0%). This vote share is the lowest for any party that has won a majority in the UK.

4:31pm The Tories have lost four seats previously held by their PMs tonight, two to Labour and two to the Lib Dems. The Lib Dems won Theresa May’s old seat of Maidenhead and David Cameron’s Witney, while Labour won Boris Johnson’s Uxbridge as well as defeating Truss.

4:14pm Liz Truss is out of parliament after being defeated by 27-25 by Labour in her South-West Norfolk seat, with 23% Reform and 14% for an independent. Labour’s vote was up 8 with Truss down 43.

3:52pm The Greens gain North Herefordshire from the Tories by 43-32, on a 34-point swing to the Greens and a 31-point slump for the Tories. The Greens easily held their one existing seat of Brighton Pavilion.

3:02pm The Greens gain Waveney Valley from the Tories by 42-30, a 32% swing to the Greens and a 32% drop for the Tories. Reform won 16% (new) and Labour 9% (down 9 owing to tactical voting).

2:27pm Labour GAINS North-East Somerset from Tory Jacob Rees-Mogg, a fervent supporter of Boris Johnson. 41% Labour (up 14), 30% Tories (down 25) and 15% Reform (new).

2:11pm After 479 of 650, Labour has WON an overall majority, with 333 seats (up 155). The Tories have 72 (down 171), the Lib Dems 46 (up 39), Reform four (up four), the SNP four (down 34), independents four (up four) and Plaid four (up two). Vote share changes are Labour up 1.4, Tories down 19.5, Lib Dems up 0.3, Reform up 12 and Greens up 4.

1:32pm After 30 of 57 Scottish seats, 23 Labour (up 22), four SNP (down 23), two Lib Dems (up one) and one Tory (steady). Vote share changes are Labour up 18.5 and SNP down 15.5.

1:27pm After 332 of 650 seats (more than halfway through now), 245 Labour (up 111), 42 Tories (down 122), 27 Lib Dems (up 23), four Reform (up four), four SNP (down 21) and three Plaid (up two). Vote share changes are Labour up 1.2, Tories down 19.5, Lib Dems none, Reform up 12.5 and Greens up 4.2.

1:20pm The Greens crushed Labour in Bristol Central by 57-33, a 31-point gain for the Greens and a 26-point slump for Labour.

1:15pm Something went wrong for Labour in Leicester. They lost Leicester East to the Tories and now Leicester South to an independent, who defeated Labour by 35-33, a 35% drop for Labour.

1:09pm After 266 of 650 seats, 196 Labour (up 85), 32 Tories (down 99), 23 Lib Dems (up 20), four SNP (down 14), three Reform (up three), two Plaid (up two) and one Green (up one). Vote share changes are Labour up 1.0, Tories down 20, Lib Dems no change, Reform up 13 and Greens up four.

1:02pm Reform leader Nigel Farage easily wins Clacton, defeating the Tories by 46-28 with 16% for Labour. Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn easily wins Islington North as an independent, defeating Labour by 49-34. A pre-election seat poll had Corbyn trailing by 43-29.

12:31pm After 141 of 650 seats, 110 Labour (up 41), 14 Tories (down 49), 14 Lib Dems (up 11), one Reform (up one), one SNP (down five) and one Plaid (up one). Vote share changes are Labour up 0.7, Tories down 19, Lib Dems down 0.1, Reform up 12.5 and Greens up 4.

12:24pm The Tories have GAINED Leicester East from Labour, very much against the trend. 31% Tories (down 7), 22% Labour (down 29!), 13.5% Lib Dem (up 8), 12% independent (new) and 8% One Leicester (new). I believe Labour’s crash here is probably due to the Muslim vote.

12:11pm Labour has won all three seats declared so far in Scotland, gaining all three from the SNP. Labour’s Scottish vote is up 23 points, while the SNP is down 17.

12:05pm After 84 of 650 seats, Labour 73 (up 29), Tories six (down 31), Lib Dems four (up three) and Reform one (up one). Vote share changes are Labour up 1.2, Tories down 20, Lib Dems down 0.4, Reform up 13 and Greens up four.

11:54am The first Scottish seat (Kilmarnock & Loudoun) is a Labour gain from the SNP. 45% Labour (up 26), 33% SNP (down 18), 8% Tories (down 16) and 8% Reform (new).

11:46am Labour lost Hartlepool to the Tories at a by-election in May 2021 when Boris Johnson was popular, but have won it easily at this election. Earlier this year, Labour lost Rochdale at a by-election to George Galloway after their candidate was disendorsed. In the rematch, Labour defeated Galloway by 33-29 with 17% for Reform and 11% Tories.

11:27am Reform WINS their first seat in Ashfield, gaining from the Tories. 43% Reform (up 38), 29% Labour (up three), 16% independent (down 11) and an embarrassing 4th place for the Tories in a seat they held with just 8% (down 31!).

11:14am After 22 of 650 seats, Labour 19 (up seven), Lib Dems two (up two) and Tories just one (down nine). Vote share changes based on these seats’ votes in 2019 are Labour up two, Lib Dems up 0.4, Tories down 22, Reform up 14 and Greens up four.

11:09am Labour GAINS Bridgend in Wales from the Tories. 40% Labour (up one), 19% Reform (up 14), 16% Tories (down 28!), 9% Plaid (up four) and 8% for an independent.

11:05am Labour GAINS Nuneaton from the Tories. 37% Labour (up five), 28.5% Tories (down 32!) and 22% Reform (new).

10:41am Lib Dems GAIN Harrogate & Knaresborough from Tories. 46% Lib Dem (up 10), 30% Tories (down 22), 11% Reform (new) and 8% Labour (down two).

9:39am Labour GAINS Swindon South from the Tories. Labour 48% (up 8), Tories 27% (down 25) and Reform 14% (new).

8:42am It’s a similar story in Blyth & Ashington, Labour up a little, Reform surges and the Tories plunge.

8:37am Labour HOLDS Houghton & Sunderland South, the first seat to be declared. Labour 47% (up 7), Reform 29% (up 13) and Tories 14% (down 19). Turnout was 51% (down six).

7:09am Friday The Exit Poll has Labour on 410 of the 650 seats, the Tories on 131, the Lib Dems 61, Reform 13, the SNP 10, Plaid Cymru (Welsh Nationalists) four and the Greens two. That’s better for the Tories and Reform than expected from pre-election polls, a little worse for Labour and a lot worse for the SNP.

8:45pm I prefer traditional polls, but William has asked me to comment on what the Multilevel Regression with Poststratification (MRP) polls are saying. These have massive sample sizes, with the YouGov MRP the largest sample at almost 48,000. The YouGov MRP agrees well with the ElectionMapsUK forecast below, with 431 Labour seats, 102 Conservatives, 72 Lib Dems and 18 SNP. The Survation MRP is the most bearish for the Conservatives, with just 64 Conservatives, to 484 for Labour and 61 Lib Dems. Fieldwork periods for the MRP polls were at least a week, so they wouldn’t pick up late movement.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

The UK general election is today, with polls closing at 7am AEST Friday. The Guardian’s election night guide says The Exit Poll will be released once polls close. The exit poll only gives party seat numbers, not vote shares. In past elections, for example 2015 and 2017, the exit poll has predicted seat numbers at odds with pre-election polls. In these cases, the exit poll has been more accurate.

In the UK, votes are not counted at polling places but transported to a counting location within each seat before they are counted. All times listed here are AEST. The Guardian expects only eight of the 650 House of Commons seats to be declared by 10am Friday. By 12pm, about 85 seats will be in. The big rush of results will come between 12pm and 2pm, with 443 declarations, and the remaining seats should be declared by 4pm with “perhaps a few exceptions”.

The final UK national poll aggregate from ElectionMapsUK has Labour at 39.3%, the Conservatives at 21.4%, the far-right Reform at 16.4%, the Liberal Democrats at 11.0% and the Greens at 6.4%. Polls in the final few days have suggested a small recovery for the Conservatives, with Labour’s lead dropping below 20 points. Individual poll results have been between Labour leads of 13 and 20 points over the Conservatives.

With first past the post, these vote shares result in a Labour landslide. The ElectionMapsUK seat forecast is for Labour to win 436 of the 650 seats, the Conservatives 101, the Lib Dems 66, the Scottish National Party 17, the Greens four and Reform three. While the Conservatives have improved to just above 100 seats, that’s far below the 165 they won at their previous nadir in 1997.

While Labour has led the SNP by single-digit margins in most Scottish polls since March, the final Savanta poll gave the SNP a 34-31 lead over Labour. If true, the SNP could limit its losses after getting 48 of 59 Scottish seats in 2019 to just one for Labour. Seat polls for the Greens have them gaining three seats. In other UK election news, the right-wing tabloid The Sun has endorsed Labour.

French election: candidate withdrawals may block far-right RN from majority

The 577 French lower house seats are elected by a two-round single-member system. In final results of Sunday’s first round, the far-right National Rally (RN) and allies won 33.2%, the left-wing alliance of four parties (NFP) 28.1%, President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist Ensemble 21.3% and the conservative Republicans and other right-wing candidates 10.2%.

Turnout was high at 66.7% of registered voters. This meant 76 seats were filled, where the winner had at least 50% of valid votes and at least 25% of registered votes. It also meant that many third candidates cleared the 12.5% of registered voters required to advance. On these results, 306 seats would go to three-way runoffs and five to four-way runoffs.

In this Sunday’s runoffs, FPTP will be used. To avoid splitting the anti-RN vote, there have been a large number of candidate withdrawals. Now there are only 89 three-way runoffs and two four-way runoffs remaining after the candidate registration deadline on Tuesday.

A Harris poll conducted Tuesday and Wednesday gave RN and allies 190-220 seats (240-305 in the Harris poll on first-round election day), the NFP 159-183 seats (140-190) and Ensemble 110-135 (70-120). If this occurs, RN and allies will be well short of the 289 seats needed for a majority.

Biden still dropping in US polls

The US election is on November 5. Before last Thursday’s debate between Joe Biden and Donald Trump, Biden was nearly tied with Trump in FiveThirtyEight’s national poll aggregate (down by only 0.1 point). Biden has now fallen 2.3 points behind, trailing Trump by 42.1-39.8 with 9.7% for Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

The highly-regarded Siena poll for The New York Times of likely voters gave Trump a five-point lead with third party candidates and a six-point lead without, a 2-3 point movement to Trump since Siena’s pre-debate poll. State polls have not yet caught up to the debate. There’s increasing speculation that Biden may withdraw from the contest. If this occurs, a new candidate will be selected by Democrats at their August 19-22 convention.

644 comments on “UK general election live”

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  1. Labour: 34%, 412 seats, 211 seats gained

    Conservative: 24%, 121 seats, 250 seats lost

    Liberal Democrat: 11.6%, 72* seats, 63 seats gained *Assuming LD win last Scottish seat

    SNP: 30% (Scotland only, = 2.4% of GB vote) 9* seats, 39 seats lost *Assuming LD win last Scottish seat

    Reform: 14%, 5** seats, 5 seats gained **Assumes Reform confirmed winning South Basildon & E Thurrock

    Green: 7%, 4 seats, 3 seats gained

    PC: 0.5% (TBC% in Wales), 4 seats, 2 seats gained

    Independent: 2%, 6 seats, 6 seats gained

  2. It seems Reform is the winner of South Basildon and East Thurrock over Labour by 98 votes.

    That leaves the last seat of Inverness, Skye and West Ross-shire to be determined tomorrow.

  3. Lib Dems have won Inverness, tomorrow is just a formality it seems.

    Caps off a good 24 hours for them, now back to 6 seats in Scotland – not their most ever like the UK figure but most elected at a GE since 2010.

  4. General Election results: All Alba candidates lose deposits

    According to BBC Scotland’s Philip Sim, the party managed a total of 11,784 votes across the 19 constituencies they contested.

    Both the party’s previous MPs at Westminster, Neale Hanvey and Kenny MacAskill lost their seats.

    Candidates must pay a deposit to enter a UK parliamentary election and this is only return if they receive at least 5% of the votes.

    Hanvey picked up Alba’s highest vote share with 2.8% of the vote.

  5. The Labour veteran and Britain’s first black female MP, Diane Abbott, will become mother of the house in the new parliament, having served her Hackney North and Stoke Newington constituency for almost 40 years.

    The former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn just missed out on becoming father of the house because he was behind Sir Edward Leigh in the 1983 queue to be sworn in.

  6. Thanks for the coverage of the UK election, William and Adrian.
    An English mate of mine summed up the result this morning-
    “This was more than just an election- it was a national enema”.

    Who is Hilary Benn? The new Secretary of State for Northern Ireland in profile.
    ‘He did more for Sri Lanka than he did for Ballymena’: North Antrim reacts to shock Paisley defeat
    Final seat set for further recount amid reports SNP has conceded defeat
    A second recount in Inverness, Skye and West Ross-shire is due to begin at 10.30am on Saturday.

  8. Reform came second in 98 seats – 89 won by Labour and 9 won by the conservatives. So when Farage said Reform are going to target Labour held seats at the next election that is pretty sensible; there is not a lot of Tory held seats where they were close.

    Interesting that it was Independents who won on the Gaza issue, and not the Workers Party. I guess the Galloway baggage plus ideology is a bit much.

  9. Interesting article about what went on in the Tory campaign.

    When rumours were ablaze that Rishi Sunak was about to call a snap election, one Conservative cabinet minister was asked by a colleague what was happening. “No idea,” he replied. “He’s either going to call a snap election today, name a date for the autumn or tell everyone that AI is really, really important.”

    The cabinet – and most officials in Tory headquarters, which was disastrously underprepared – had been kept in the dark until almost the last moment. When Sunak did announce the election in Downing Street in the pouring rain, the move went down like a lead balloon with his colleagues.

    “This is going to be a disaster,” one senior Conservative minister exclaimed to a Labour MP in an unguarded moment of shock. This minister went on to lose his safe seat in Thursday’s election.

  10. On a personal note, really glad to see all the Cornwall seats rid of the Tories.

    That’s where my ancestors came from before migrating to Australia during the 1850’s gold rush.

  11. To give an idea for how long it had been since the last time Labour was in power: Last time Labour was in power, it would’ve still been somewhat timely to make a Harold Saxon reference in this thread.

    Ah well, guess I’ll have to settle for a Roger ap Gwilliam reference instead…

    (There’s hopefully at least one nerd out there who appreciates this.)

  12. @Wat Tyler

    Ah, Dr. Who reference, nice.

    (Unfortunately haven’t really been that much into that series admittedly, I grew up on Stargate as my go-to Sci-Fi show. But I enjoyed the 9th and 10th Doctors for the first and second renewed series).

  13. The final seat tally

    Labour: 411
    Conservative: 121
    Liberal Democrats: 72
    SNP: 9
    Sinn Fein: 7
    Reform: 5
    DUP: 5
    Green: 4
    Plaid Cymru: 4
    SDLP: 2
    Alliance: 1
    UUP: 1
    Independents: 6
    – Shockat Adam
    – Jeremy Corbyn
    – Alex Easton
    – Adnan Hussein
    – Ayoub Khan
    – Iqbal Mohamed
    Speaker’s Seat: 1*

    *By convention, the Speaker is independent for as long as they are in the role. The current Speaker, Lindsay Hoyle, would otherwise be a Labour MP, which is why some tallies have Labour at 412.

    I can’t accurately post popular vote numbers yet as I am seeing conflicting info.

  14. What annoys me about that is they could have at least waited a couple of years before they did that turn. It was barely a couple of months between “She’s going to be a really successful PM who ushers in a golden age” and “You’re a tyrant and I’m ending your political career now!”

    At least she got to redeem herself in The Stolen Earth.

  15. Wat:

    Absolutely. It’s sort of thing that would have worked if it had gradually played out over a couple of seasons, rather than the space of literally five minutes of screen time. I also don’t think she was that unjustified in taking out the skull voodoo people the way that she did. They literally had just tried to make a third of the human race kill themselves on Christmas Day!

  16. Ugh yeah, they did Harriet Jones badly in that. In fact that was one of the reasons why I dropped interest in the show, although probably due to my previous love of Stargate clouding my thoughts somewhat.

    If General Hammond did what Harriet Jones did, it wouldn’t have mattered an iota in the Stargate continuity.

  17. But but we had to name drop Torchwood…

    Gah, I love ya RTD but your mystery box storytelling style is the weakest thing about your previous and current runs. Not as bad as JJ Abrams’s mystery boxes, of course, but still annoying.

  18. Kirsdarke:

    In the real world, Harriet Jones’ actions at the end of The Christmas Jones would have seen her reelected in a historic landslide while privately she and her advisers had a chuckle about that silly alien who tried to claim she was tired.

  19. Come now Asha. It made perfect sense. In 2004, it was common for normal teenage girls to wear cloaks with hoods, abandon their babies at the door of churches and point ominously at street signs. When you think about it, it’s our fault for being overimaginative and thinking the weird scifi show that was foreshadowing a big payoff might have… I dunno… a big payoff.

    There’s a lot of comparison to that and the revelation about Rey’s parents in The Last Jedi but I don’t think that’s accurate. At least with Rey’s parents, it still made sense. There weren’t a series of visual clues that specifically implied that her parents were important.

  20. YaramahZ wrote, “Good to see it didn’t take long on this thread for these results to spun as a bad omen for Labour. Now I’m waiting for the Corbyn boosters to inform us how Starmer winning easily does not repudiate Corbyn’s leadership.”

    Actually more people cast votes for Corbyn’s Labour in 2019, than voted for Starmer’s Labour in this election. What Corbyn lacked back then was no Brexit and a Reform Party standing in every Tory held seat. You can have your opinions, but not your own facts.

  21. It is true that Labour got fewer actual votes this time than last (9.7 vs 10.3 million). But far fewer people voted this time than in 2019 overall – 28.8 million compared to 32 million. Because Labour looked to have it in the bag, there was a lot of apathy.

    Also there was a massive push for tactical voting. The Liberal Democrats got 72 seats in part off Labour voters who wanted the Tories out in seats where normally Labour does better.

    And finally the independent push by pro-Palestine types in about 2 dozen “safe” Labour seats decrease the vote by a lot. The biggest fall was in Bradford West, Labour’s vote share was down 44.6% but they still won. It was luck that only 5 fell to independents. This accounts for 400k votes that Labour lost.

  22. Tactical voting worked both ways. Labour gained a lot of votes from normally Lib Dem supporters who also wanted the Tories out.

  23. Wat
    – much earlier
    You left out a seat
    TUV 1 – wee Jimmie Allister in North Antrim.
    It is quite possible that he will join Reform when he gets to Westminster.

  24. I can’t find a verifiable source but apparently 6 seats are required for party status.
    Wee Jimmie joining Reform would get them over the line.

    Unbelievably, DUP is currently not a party. I suspect that the Independent Unionist for North Down ( this should really be called Up Down and then the seat south of it could become Low Down), Alex Easton may be under pressure to rejoin the fold. On the other hand his resignation from DUP a few years ago was related to the split in the party on the Brexit deal and he would probably be more at home with TUV.

  25. Oakshott – There is a thing called Short Money which is given when a party has two MPs or one MP and has received over 150k votes. This is for the operation as a parliamentary party.
    The independents will therefore miss out this unless they merge to form a grouping.

    I can’t find anything on official party status etc. It seems to be up to the Speaker to create standing orders.

  26. 13 parties is also a record number elected at a General election. Previously, 12 was the record in 1945.

    FUBAR – Give Starmer at least 2 months before plotting his down fall. He has only 48 more days to go to pass Truss.

  27. B. S. Fairman @ #634 Sunday, July 7th, 2024 – 1:34 pm

    Oakshott – There is a thing called Short Money which is given when a party has two MPs or one MP and has received over 150k votes. This is for the operation as a parliamentary party.
    The independents will therefore miss out this unless they merge to form a grouping.

    I can’t find anything on official party status etc. It seems to be up to the Speaker to create standing orders.

    Thanks BSF, I did not know about short money
    The TUV only received 48,685 votes total of which Jimmy got 11,642 and the 13 candidates got a total of 37,043 (ave 2849). It is very much a one man band and will still miss out on short money.

    Farage and Allister are both “strong” characters and half way through the campaign Farage seemed to back the DUP. Having both of them in the same room would be interesting.
    Further on the Independent Unionist, Easton, he was given a free run by Jimmy who did not stand a candidate in North Down. Maybe they will both reinforce Reform.

  28. What’s the Unionist vote bank these days OC?

    It seems like it basically is about 40% of which about 1/4 are UUP and presumably more moderate, with SF and the SDLP at about 40% and The Alliance at about 10% with the rest smattered amongst independents and minor parties like Aontu.

    I understand the Alliance was originally Unionists, and the SDLP is basically middle class establishment Catholics.

    Unfortunately for the Unionists, the days of a unionist veto are long gone. Sir Jeffrey went back into Stormont because if he hadn’t – the rules would have been re-written by Westminster to allow govt formation without the DUP exercising a veto.

    English politicians dipping into NI politics never seems to go well. Exhibit A would be Enoch Powell and his time as a Unionist MP

  29. Lars
    Aontú is nationalist; it is basically a one man band; Peadar Tóibín left Sinn Féin over its liberal abortion policy but there is not much love lost – he cost SF a european seat at the European election and saved Gregory Campbell’s neck last week.

    That said, I agree 40:40:20 seems to be the new reality.
    The first assembly election not subject to a partial boycott in 2003 was 50:40:10 with unionists in both a demographic decline and losing support to the “others”.
    It will be the others particularly Alliance who will decide the question of national destiny. Alliance was formed very early in the Troubles by Unionist supporters of Captain O’Neill’s reforms. Originally unionist their current position is that the Northern Irish must determine their own destiny.
    If they had succeeded in supporting O’Neill the last 55 years would have been very different and the Union would be much more secure. It has been an own goal by the Unionists ever since.

  30. Oakeshott Country @ #631 Sunday, July 7th, 2024 – 10:11 am

    – much earlier
    You left out a seat
    TUV 1 – wee Jimmie Allister in North Antrim.
    It is quite possible that he will join Reform when he gets to Westminster.

    Right you are. My bad. I can’t believe I omitted that, when I remember specifically taking note of that party when looking up the information. Too late to edit and I won’t bother reposting as I see a new foreign election thread has popped up, so I imagine this one will die soon. Terribly sorry for the misinformation.

  31. Oakeshott Country – I found out a little more. There is a ceiling and a floor on the amount of Short Money that a party with 5 or less MPs can get. So last time the SDLP had 2 MPs but not a huge amount of votes, so qualified for the floor. The Greens only have 2 MPs but quiet a lot of votes, so they are going to hit the ceiling.
    Reform having only 5 MPs is going to hit the ceiling big time, and expect them to complain about it.

  32. Well, I’d rather the position Starmer has led the Labour party to, rather than what Corbyn left after 2019. As others have mentioned, the rise of Reform and tactical voting has definitely left Labour’s margins very thin in alot of seats. But if the party governs well in these difficult times I have little doubt they’ll be rewarded with a 2nd term.

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