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Election Live Blog!

10:18: I agree with Nigel... on the urgent need for electoral reform. Five million people have been disenfranchised by First Past the Post, and that figure doesn't include all those who voted for other parties in safe seats. I'll be dining out on that statistic in my politics classes for at least the next five years.

10:11: I completely agree with Alastair Campbell on what Labour must do:"But whereas I thought we took too long to elect a leader last time, perhaps the debate about the party’s future this time should be even longer. Because perhaps one of our problems is that we did not in reality have the debate that we should have had, with ourselves and with the public, from the moment Tony Blair made way for Gordon Brown."

09:54: Okay so Cameron has at long last won an election. I STILL don't rate Cameron as a campaigner or as a leader. If he would have moderated his policies on NHS reform, he would have had a bigger majority. While he now doesn't need a coalition, in someways governing will be harder as his right wing colleagues have now become more powerful. Coalition government allowed the Lib Dems to take the blame while the Tories took the credit. It also allowed for a greater command of the House of Commons with the combined votes of both parties' representatives. This is not to ignore the fact that the Tories will be able to screw the country up in their image. But at least at the next election they will own the resulting chaos.

09:30: How ironic that my first lesson of the day is an AS History class that is focusing on why Thatcher resigned from office.

08:33: Lots of glum faces on the London tube this morning. I gave a few glaring looks to people in pin striped suits.

05:36 Well, what are we to make of all of this? The Liberals have collapsed; UKIP has become the English party of protest but their voters have been disenfranchised by the electoral system; the SNP's opposition to a Tory government will heighten tensions between Scotland and England; Labour has to start again; Cameron will continue as prime minister; the chances of the UK breaking up, and of Britian leaving the EU, have increased considerably.

05:16: Glad Hendon flipped. It really is a shocking night.

05:06: The picture is still less clear than the pundits have us believe. The Conservatives will still find it hard to do much in the new parliament without willing participants, and even if they get a majority it will be a small one.

05:00: "It's a bad night for Britain" - Oona King.

04:43: In America you can't hold two political offices due to the potential for conflicts of interest. Boris Johnson should not be allowed to continue as mayor whilst serving as an MP for Uxbridge. At least we know which Londoners will get the new buses.

04:39: Peter Hain makes a good point that many people have voted against the establishment and opted instead for SNP in Scotland and UKIP in England.

04:00: If Nick Clegg keeps his seat in Sheffield Hallam, will he give it back?

03:53: One thing Labour does need is a bloody good argument. It needs to tear itself apart for a couple of years and come through with a sense of purpose. After 2010, it stayed disciplined in the hope that people vote for a united party. It sacrificed debate over the fear of being perceived as a shambles. Now it needs to rediscover what on earth it is for.

03:50: What the hell does Labour do now? Does it go to the left to win back Scotland, or do a Blair to win England?

03:46: Marr makes a good point on the UKIP vote - electoral reform will now become the cause of the right wing.

03:41: Chuka Umunna has extended his majority in Streatham.

03:23: SNP voters being interviewed. One of them has just said "believe in Jesus because he is the son of God", or something like that.

3:11: So glad that Labour's Andy Slaughter has retained his seat in Hammersmith. He gave a great debate performance in front of my students.

3:02: Jim Murphy is made in Scotland, from girders.

02:58: On the one hand, the Tory strategy of targeting Lib Dems is genius, as the gains they make offset any losses from Labour. On the other hand, can I please just repeat the fact that the TORIES HAVE NOT WON YET. Cameron has not won a majority yet. Cameron has never won a general election outright. He isn't that good.

02:43: Tessa Jowell is on. She is very likeable. Looks and sounds baffled, or as some of my students say, "baffed".

02:38: Alex Salmond is talking of a progressive alliance to block the Tories. I hope they get a few Labour MPs to join them.

02:30: Youngest MP since 1667 - 20 year old Mhairi Black from the SNP.

02:21: We are now looking at a car from a helicopter. You know it's either an election or a police chase when that happens.

02:16: To all my Scottish friends, can you let me know what life is like up there? I am thinking of moving.

02:13: Ladbrokes are the real winners tonight. Apparently the bookies have been taking more money on a Labour victory. Oh, and the SNP have done quite well.

02:08: How the hell am I going to make sense of all this to my politics students?

02:01: Just goes to show that if you campaign on what you think people want then you'll lose, as no one really knows what people want. Better to campaign on what you believe.

01:57: Tory majority?

01:53: The Nuneaton result looks pretty bad for Labour. Its ground game seems not to have delivered. I have that 2004 John Kerry feeling.

01:48: The real winners tonight are lobbying firms - think of all those Lib Dem cabinet members they can recruit!

01:34: Yep, should have seen the Lib Dem collapse coming.

01:18: Some refreshing candour from Neil Kinnock: voters are stupid and don't know what the hell they are doing in voting Tory.

01:08: The UKIP surge has yet to be converted into seats. I wonder whether the extent of disproportion between their votes and representation will a) put the issue of electoral reform back on the table and b) make UKIP even more angry. I am fairly certain of the latter.

00:53: The Tories haven't won commons majority since 1992.

00:52: it's a masterclass on saying absolutely nothing of note. Theresa May, our future prime minister.

00:44: Theresa May rules out speculating what might happen. So, forgive me, why have you come on a programme that speculates what might happen?

00:36: Neil Kinnock's son is standing as an MP, so his wife, the Danish prime minister, has come to the sports hall to hear the result. What a quirky country this is.

23:54: We have had a really interesting two hour debate about what might happen when nobody has any idea what might happen. I might wear blue socks tomorrow. I might not. Now, shall we talk about the potential impact of me wearing blue socks tomorrow? Oh and here come the forecasts again. It feels like we have been watching Michael Fish on repeat.

23:27: First bowl of cereal. Oh look, another friendly looking Labour woman from the North West. So far, they rule the country.

23:10: We are a 50/50 nation, it seems, whatever the result. Progressive parties look set to get around 300 seats. Right wing parties look like they are going to get a little bit more.

22:47: Let's face it we all want Sunderland South to cock it up and not be the first to declare the result. It would serve them right - why should counting precious votes be a race?

22:21: Harriet Harman is not filling me with confidence that the exit poll is wrong.

22:05 Given the quality of the BBC info graphics, I don't place much faith on that exit poll that they put together. Or perhaps I am just hoping against hope that Britain in the next five years won't be as shit as they are.

22:00: Oh my goodness - if that's the result then Katie Hopkins is staying I guess.

21:59: Sorry Sophie but that map looks about as useful as an ashtray on a motorcycle.

21:55: David Dimbleby is go! Will someone shut that music off please! Oh no it's another info graphic.

20:15: Now doing what any normal person would do before watching 9 hours of politics. I am watching Deadwood.

19:20: I have voted! A quick walk round the corner to my son's local school was all it took. The last time I went into the main hall was for a Frozen singalong. In honour of this, the lady who checked my credentials turned the whole bloody room to ice. I skated over to the polling both, put a cross by Labour's Chuka Umunna (after a few weeks of agonising between the Reds and the Greens), and sauntered out to the sound of Let it Go. A lady ahead of me was barred from voting because apparently she wasn't registered. If this sort of thing is repeated often enough tonight then Nick Clegg and David Cameron's voter registration law will have done its job. Well done boys.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The day democracy died

My prediction