May 7th, 2010

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Live blogging the election - with big lag :)

00:52 Peter Robinson, Northern Ireland's First Minister, "unexpectedly" lost his seat. Collapse )

Strange constituency names:
[01:02] <GPI> ... wow that's an interesting name
[01:02] <GPI> Northampton South
[01:02] fluffymormegil Borough population of 200k will do that :)
[01:02] fluffymormegil sadly, there is no Southampton North.

01:03 The BBC is annoying us. Plaid Cymru just gained a seat, so the BBC has started talking about Scotland...? It's not just Welsh people who care about Wales, you know!

01:14 The Liberal Democrats hold Torbay - a seat in danger of going to the Conservatives. Collapse )

01:31 There have been widespread issues of voters being disenfranchised. Most of the seats involved are those with close contests, where vigorous campaigning has gone on. These are mostly Liberal Democrat seats as we have few safe seats. Post on the legal issues by karen2205.

01:36 Further BBC annoyances - in the middle of the City of Durham count, a tight Liberal Democrat/Labour race, the BBC switched over to show the count for Kirkcaldy. Very annoying, because of course Gordon Brown will hold his own seat, even if he stops being Prime Minister! We wanted to know if we'd won Durham! Turns out to be a Labour hold for Durham with a mere 0.4% swing Lab to LD.

01:41 Unfathomable questions:
[01:41] barakta You do realise no one while I have been on here have done Shag Marry Cliff on Gordy, Dave and Nick!
[01:43] baratron would you WANT to do Shag Marry Cliff on Gordy, Dave and Nick? that would mean shagging one of them, and marrying another!
[01:44] <GPI> shag nick clegg, marry gordon brown
[01:44] fluffymormegil ... and murder him for the insurance money?

01:51 The Conservatives hold Guildford. Disappointing for us as Liberal Democrats because last time there was a mere 0.09% Tory majority. However, let's be honest - it's deepest Surrey. The surprise is really that the LibDems did so well last time.

Have to say though, people keep talking about percentages and saying the LibDem vote is down. Is it? If the turnout is way up, I wouldn't be surprised if the actual number of votes is very similar number, and it's simply that more people have turned out to vote Tory this time. I want to check the actual numbers.

02:47 baratron National Liberal Party - votes, 93
baratron not very national, that
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More laggy election live-blogging.

02:48 Normally, in an election, there is a marked swing from one party to another. It differs in size across the country and is affected by local issues, but it's possible to make a prediction. This time round, the swings have been all over the place. Labour to Conservative in some areas, Lib Dem to Conservative in others, Labour to Lib Dem in others, even Conservative to Labour! And that's excluding the various nationalist parties in the regions.

I think the BBC commentator, whose name I don't know, was absolutely right in his synopsis of what's been happening. When a popular Liberal Democrat candidate is standing again, they often keep the seat. When the popular LibDem stands down for an unknown new candidate, the LibDems may lose the seat. softfruit says that incumbency is a factor for all parties but moreso the LDs, worth about 1000-2000 votes.

02:57 17% Lab to LD swing in Merthyr Tydfil - but we still didn't win it!

02:58 Non-news of the night: David Cameron re-elected as MP for Witney. A wonderful collection of insane fringe candidates though, including "comedy terrorist"> Aaron Barschak dressed as Jesus with fake blood. (We always have loonies standing for fun/attention in seats where a party leader is the sitting MP).

03:07 The BBC is annoying us again with its bad editing. They've been doing live TV for decades, how is it that they're now chopping and changing from one scene to another seemingly at random. And why are they not showing all the declarations for key government and shadow government figures?

03:14 Liberal Democrat joy as we hold Dunbartonshire East, Cardiff Central and Brecon & Radnor.

03:23 Misreporting by the BBC as they say we hold Newton Abbot, which has actually swung to the Conservatives :( However, it's difficult to draw any conclusions from this as Newton Abbot is a new constituency this time round. The Liberal Democrat MP Richard Younger-Ross was MP for Teignbridge, which no longer exists.

03:31 We gain Burnley! 9.6% swing from Lab to Lib Dem! Excellent news as Burnley elected seven BNP councillors to its borough council in 2003 and one county council member in 2009. The BNP is, in their own words, "the only party which opposes mass immigration and surrender to the European Union", and in my words, a bunch of racists. Preventing them from gaining any more power is a Very Good Thing.

03:37 Ten minutes of excitement, as we hear that the Lib Dems hold Berwickshire, the "big Scottish named one" (copyright dannilion) -  Caithness S and E Ross, Bristol West, Norfolk North, and Southport.

03:48 Romsey & Soton N lost to Conservatives.

03:52 We gain Redcar from the incumbent Labour candidate with a massive swing - we only got 20.2% of the vote last time. 21.8% swing from Labour to LibDem, which has to be one of the biggest swings of this election. The anti-Peter Robinson swing was 22.9%.

04:13 LibDems hold Carshalton with an increased majority, and Inverness. A wonderful quote from Ian Hislop about the concept of a hung Parliament: "A government of all the talents. There's not many of them, but let's put them all in."
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Almost up-to-date election live-blogging!

04:21 Good news as LibDems hold Colchester.

04:23 Sad news as we lose Oxford West, and the excellent MP Dr Evan Harris. The Conservative majority is a mere 176! Unfortunately a boundary revision has removed most of the colleges of the University of Oxford from the constituency - students are traditionally more likely to vote LibDem as we are the most student-friendly party. Then Chesterfield lost to Labour. Boo.

04:28 Amusing news for those who hate celebrities as Esther Rantzen will not be entering the House of Commons. In fact, she got so few votes (a mere 1872) that she lost her deposit. Hehe.

04:29 We lose York Outer :(

04:41 Lots of good news. The LibDems hold Sutton and Cheam, a key Tory target, and Ross Skye & Lochaber. Jacqui Smith, one of the most corrupt Labour MPs, has been voted out. We hold Dorset Mid (with a mere 269 vote majority!) and Cheadle.

04:52 LibDems gain Norwich South from Labour! But also lose Cornwall South East to the Conservatives. Then we hold Birmingham Yardley. Stressful.

05:23 Cambridge held!!! Rumours were suggesting this would fall to the Conservatives, and indeed there was a 7% swing from LD to Conservative. But we still managed a LibDem majority of 6792.

I've totally forgotten to mention that Lembit Opik lost his seat in Montgomeryshire, and I can't even remember when it happened. Hours ago.

05:26 Kingston & Surbiton hold! I've been worried sick due to not having heard about any of our really local constituencies. Still nothing about Twickenham. Twitter suggests that Richmond Park (our constituency) has already gone to at least one recount. We also hold Leeds North West.
corrosive

Severely disgruntled election live-blogging.

05:42 LibDems hold Twickenham. Vince Cable, our guru and spiritual leader, is re-elected! 54.4% of the vote, 12,140 majority, and a 0.5% swing from Conservative to LibDem!

05:50 Yes! Caroline Lucas elected for the Green Party in Brighton Pavillion! The UK's first Green MP!

05:54 FUCK FUCK FUCK. Richmond Park taken by that smug, smarmy, little git Zac Goldsmith. 29,461 for him vs 25,370 for Susan Kramer :( *cries*. I've just asked Richard if we can move house to a couple of streets away so we can have Ed Davey as our MP instead.

I'm so upset about this. It's one thing losing our seat to the Tories, but another losing it to a GIT. There are perfectly nice and acceptable members of the Conservative Party! (e.g. Helen Whatley, the candidate in Kingston & Surbiton). Zac Goldsmith is a slimy prick who bought his seat with Daddy's money. Gah.

Though I am very, very slightly cheered up by the discovery that Kingston & Surbiton had a Monster Raving Loony candidate called Monkey the Drummer. Awesome!

06:11 LibDems hold Portsmouth South, and St Austell & Newquay. We're still waiting for Nick Clegg's result! Apparently counting in the six Sheffield constituencies has been A Mess.

06:24 A few more LibDem declarations: we hold Cornwall North, Orkney & Shetland, and Hornsey.
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Election live-blogging post 5.

06:35 LibDems hold Bermondsey & Old Southwark (Simon Hughes), and Sheffield Hallam (Nick Clegg)! Majority for Nick Clegg is doubled, to 15,284. 6.9% swing from Conservative to LibDem :)

06:43 ARGH GITFACE ON THE TV.
Paxman: How much of your own money did you spend on your campaign?
Goldsmith: "It's not about money" - no, that's how come you bought 500 matching jackets for your team to wear! And that's the smallest thing I know of. Great, so you were elected an hour ago, and you're lying to us already.

06:45 LibDems gain Wells from the Conservatives. The incumbent MP was highly implicated in the expenses scandal, having spent £30,000 of taxpayers' money on manure!

06:58 The LibDems lose Camborne & Redruth to the Conservatives with a majority of 66 :o Seems that every seat we gain is balanced by a loss.

It's all gone rather quiet. Wondering when to go to bed. Waiting for 66 more seats, which could make all the difference between a Conservative majority or a Lib-Lab coalition :X
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Election live-blogging post 6.

I'm wondering what today's newspapers are going to say. We had no idea what was happening in terms of Parliament composition 4am when the absolute latest editions go to press.

07:15 LibDems gain Bradford East from Labour with a 7.6% swing Lab to LD, and gain Solihull from the Conservatives with a 0.3% swing. Up to 50 LD seats now, which would make for LD50 puns if we weren't all so tired.

They haven't even started COUNTING the votes in Poplar yet?! That was one of the constituencies with severe accusations of electoral fraud, things like 18 people suddenly being added to one, 3-bedroomed house. Apparently it's taken all night just to verify the number of votes cast and the postal votes.

The Guardian claims that 25 constituencies won't even start to be counted yet... So we won't actually know the composition of Parliament until this evening. Definitely thinking about going to bed now.

07:32 LibDems lose Truro & Falmouth to the Conservatives. Further proof that when a popular incumbent MP stands down for an unknown new candidate, the LibDems may lose the seat.

08:10 LibDems hold Manchester Withington, Labour hold Streatham. And I think the people in BBC titling are all falling asleep, because they declared that an Independent candidate had won Manchester Central from Labour - but the results on the web site show a strong Labour hold!

Nothing at all interesting has happened for a while. Definitely time for bed.