Pound falls on fears UK is heading for political uncertainty as Brexit talks loom
Irshad Salim — The UK could be heading for a hung parliament as voting closes across the UK in the 2017 general election, the exit poll has predicted, with everyone saying it’s a disaster for Theresa May who emerged as the accidental Prime Minister after David Cameron resigned following Brexit referendum in June 2016.
If confirmed by the actual vote count, the result would be a major setback for Mrs. May. She called this election three years early, expecting to cruise to a smashing victory that would win her a mandate to see Britain through the long and difficult negotiations with the European Union about Britain’s exit from the bloc.
However, Tories may still be on track for huge landslide despite ‘hung parliament’ exit poll. The party could win a 100-seat landslide despite the shock exit poll, reported The Independent.
The exit poll – which is very rarely wrong – suggested that the Conservatives would be the biggest party but that they would fail to score a working majority in the House of Commons. That would result in a hung parliament, with any government having to rule as a minority or in a coalition.
The results of the exit poll, collected and processed by broadcasters including BBC and Sky, predicted that Britain is headed for a hung parliament.
May’s Conservative party is projected to only take 314 seats of 650 seats with a loss of 17 seats and 12 votes short of a majority, while the opposition Labor Party led by Jeremy Corbyn is projected to take 266 seats, a gain of 34.
It also put the Scottish National Party (SNP) on 34, the Liberal Democrats on 14, Plaid Cymru on three and the Greens on one.
In Britain’s Parliamentary system, if a party wins 326 seats in the House of Commons, its leader becomes prime minister and can form a government.
The shock poll predicts the Conservatives will fall short of an overall majority. As leader of the party that seems certain to win the most seats, Theresa May will have the first opportunity to form a government.
Voters are ‘bloody difficult’
The Daily Telegraph’s cartoonist, Matt, has reacted to the exit poll with typical humor.
“It turns out the voters are bloody difficult as well,” grumble two politicians standing outside 10 Downing Street, home of the UK prime minister.
He’s alluding to Prime Minister Theresa May’s remark in the election campaign that she will be “a bloody difficult woman” during the Brexit negotiations.
The former leader of the Liberal Democrats Ming Campbell said his party will make “no pact, no deal, no coalition” with either Labor or the Conservatives in the event of a hung parliament. Campbell made the comments following the exit poll that showed Theresa May losing her majority in what would be a major electoral upset.
The Labor’s Jeremy Corbyn could then be the prime minister, if the exit poll is right, according to the Independent and The New York Times.
The final outcome is not likely to be known until early Friday morning UK standard time. But the British pound fell sharply after the exit poll projected that the Conservatives would not win a majority.
Within seconds of the exit poll being broadcast, the pound lost more than 2 cents against the dollar, falling from $1.2955 to $1.2752.