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UK general election: Your reaction

20:08 UK time, Thursday, 6 May 2010

Millions of people in constituencies across the UK have cast their votes in the general election, and look to have ended up with a hung parliament. Did you vote and what do you expect to happen now?

It looks as if the Conservatives will win the most seats, but it remains unclear as to who might try to form a government - and there have also been reports from various locations of people being unable to vote because of queues at congested polling stations and other administrative problems.

What is your reaction to the election and the results? Did you have any trouble when trying to vote? Will this be seen as an historic election?

This debate has been closed. You can comment on our new debate about the election results here.

Watch events unfold here on the BBC News website.

Comments

Page 1 of 31

  • Comment number 1.

    Exit poll for BBC/ITN/Sky predicts hung parliament, with Conservatives largest party. Con 307; Lab 255; Lib Dem 59; Others 29

  • Comment number 2.

    I hope for a Labour majority. If not then the Lib Dems need to seriously reflect on spliting the left vote and letting the Tories back in to ruin the country.. yet again!

  • Comment number 3.

    What is the point of an exit poll if you do not publish the figures?

    All you have produced is an assumption based on figures unpublished.

    Given that that assumption is likely to be wrong... please give us the figures so that we can make our own assumptions.

  • Comment number 4.

    Whatever happens I suspect that we are in for pretty much of the same for the duration of the next parliament except we will pay more for it, a lot more.

  • Comment number 5.

    I think we're in for a long night. But whatever the outcome, no one wants Brown to lead this country forward.

    The question is will he go tonight or hang on by his finger nails again; arrogantly.

  • Comment number 6.

    So, let the battle begin......
    A couple of big questions for me:

    1. Given that the first time voter segment seems to have become energised at this election and, from my own exit polls (generally in pubs and rugby clubs), it seems to me that there is a strong base of support for the Liberal Democrats. So, will this new segment get picked up in the exit polls and is the segment big enough to make a difference?

    2. If Clegg becomes "king maker" and he decides to make a push for PR, how will that affect our electoral system. Will I still vote for an MP in my constituency, or will I vote for a party?

    Have a great night - we will be watching you with interest

    Cheers
    Dave

  • Comment number 7.

    i just hope conservatives dont get in, im completely against the thought of national civil service

  • Comment number 8.

    I voted, I always vote.

    What's going to happen is a bunch of MPs are going to be elected, and they're going to be presented with the balance of payments figures, and they're going to have to make cuts, and raise taxes.

    And this will be true, regardless of who is elected.

    Who bares the brunt of the cuts and the taxes depends on who is elected, and by how much.

  • Comment number 9.

    Labour and Liberal were almost neck and neck in the polls

    Now we see Labour taking 255 seats and Liberal taking just 59 ( less than 25% of the labour figure )

    As a voter, I feel cheated.

    Proportional Representation is not a privilege, it is a democratic right which is denied to us by two corrupt political parties who seek more influence and authority than they are given by the British public.

  • Comment number 10.

    How accurate can these exit polls really be, I wasn't even asked who I had voted for when I left my polling station?

  • Comment number 11.

    Could we get the dream team of David Cameron PM and Vince Cable Chancellor?

  • Comment number 12.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 13.

    I am not surprised to see the Tower Hamlets borough appear to have irregularities with voters addresses etc. Good luck Labour, you need it!

  • Comment number 14.

    If that is true then I am shocked at the seats for Lib Dems! Lets just see what the percentage is for each party and then take a more balanced view. One thing I would say, is if those figures turn out to be correct then it would look like the people have been quite decisive. What we seem to forget is the Labour party built in advantage even before a vote is/was cast.

  • Comment number 15.

    If it does turn into a hung parliament, it should be the party with the majority of the public vote - not discredited Brown - who has the right to form a coalition government.

    What right should Brown have to lead a coalition government if Brown comes third?

    Time to prepare for a Brown-out. Unlike a black out it's a very good thing!

  • Comment number 16.

    Country can,t afford,
    EEC budget up 6% from bankrupt countries.
    Immigration - No jobs.
    Deficit - Getting Worse.
    Ignored indiginous population.

    Time to break some eggs.

    Voted BNP - hope they do well tonight.


  • Comment number 17.

    Well well well, we shall have to see, but maybe the "safe pair of hands" wasn't so safe after all. Go on then, can you remember whose hands they were? Not so much to choose between our two parties is there? Maybe it really is time for a change?

  • Comment number 18.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 19.

    well i feel this election has been a farce
    my wife and i hadnt even received voting cards so we were unable to vote

  • Comment number 20.

    Stop treating your listeners as morons and tell us what percentage of the votes your exit poll is based on rather than the number of parliamentary seats which we know under our current unfair electoral system bears no relationship to votes cast.

  • Comment number 21.

    I just hope the Tories don't get those extra 19 seats.

  • Comment number 22.

    Not been able to vote due to there not being enough staff to deal with all the voters. we qued outside the polling station at 9:30 and was not allowed to register our vote!!!! this is not acceptable.

  • Comment number 23.

    Unfortunately I am to young to vote at present but hopes that the exit poll is wrong, as in previous years. We have had a Conservative government in the past which proved very un-popular by most people and we've had a labour government which didn't go too well either. In my personal opinion the Liberal Democrats are the way forward.

  • Comment number 24.

    So it looks like we are heading for a hung parliament, just when a steady, confident hand was needed on the economic tiller. Why is this? We are like rabbits caught in the headlights. As we stand in the tattered remains of our economy, we don't know what to do.

  • Comment number 25.

    On the basis of the BBC's exit poll, surely even if Labour were to do a deal with the Lib Dems, they still wouldn't have a majority?!

  • Comment number 26.

    if this exit poll is correct what a vast injustice there will be when over 25% of the vote gets 9% of the seats! the system is wrong we have to have PR!

  • Comment number 27.

    I voted, its my right to vote. I voted Lib Dems as I have done for the last 10 years and from the exit polls I think people were tempted by change and then maybe scared or didn't want to 'waste' their vote as the papers have been stating. Your vote is your vote, I will never vote tactically, I will always vote for what I want. My hope is a coalition Government (they could learn from each other, no party should have absolute power), and I hope when I wake up tomorrow that no one will have the majority. I would be heart sore to see Lib Dem join with Tories but maybe for the sake of the country I would agree.
    Labour are very generous, too generous and too scared to offend. Brown talks of serious issues but then will form a board, and a review and what next? Decisions are necessary. Cut the spend, we know its coming so deal with it now, don't delay a year.

  • Comment number 28.

    whatever the result- do you think someone could ask Mr. Paxman to let his guests actually answer a question? It's not the Paxman show.......

  • Comment number 29.

    Exit poll - what a load of rubbish! The one certain thing about elections is that nothing is uniform. And do you really think that everyone tells pollsters the truth? LibDems to carry 80 to 100 seats.

  • Comment number 30.

    Looking at one of the comments above, I saw a person talking about the PR system and I agree. The PR system insures that every vote cast, is counted and each person has their say.

  • Comment number 31.

    Why is so much attention on the exit poll, figures show 20% of voters are by post ? and surely their must also be a small percentage needing allowed for who voted after the exit poll figures were put up ?

  • Comment number 32.

    Two thoughts on the exit poll which don't seem to have made on BBC1's coverage so far:

    a) The Conservatives could do a deal with the Ulster Unionists and get to the magic 326 overall majority figure, even if Labour did a deal with the Lib Dems

    b) More importantly, how accurate can the exit poll be at constituency level when it is 20,000 sample across only 600 or so seats (30-40 per seat = sampling error of more than 10% in any one seat!!). If you factor in the effect of the marginal seats, I don't see how on earth the exit poll can be accurate.

  • Comment number 33.

    By the way 255 + 59 = 314 - HENCE LAB/LIB COALITION GOVERNMENT NOT POSSIBLE WITHOUT ANOTHER PARTY

    Also, you MUST say the percentage votes you have for each party in the exit poll. This allows people to compare it with the opinion polls.

  • Comment number 34.

    If exit polls are correct Labour + Libdem is still not an overall majority. Why are they assuming they do? Is that because NI parties will support Labour?

  • Comment number 35.

    A few comments about the party with the most votes being allowed to govern - but of course that isn't how first past the post works. Effectively even a majority government can rule on a minority of the national vote.

  • Comment number 36.

    Come on Paxman! There aren't even any results in yet; cool your jets, you're making yourself look foolish.

  • Comment number 37.

    Interesting how Brown/Mandelson suddenly backs electoral reform.

    Didn't hear them saying anything about that in the last three elections.

    Oh yeah it's because they're going to loose this one and need to cosy up to the Lib Dems.

    Bring the Brown-out on...

  • Comment number 38.

    the amount of time and effort being wasted on unsubstantiated exit poll figures is outstanding.

  • Comment number 39.

    I have two observations - I am waiting for any of the talking heads or MP's to offer their best regards to Nigel Farage!

    Also, something odd about this whole election! Where are the public I wonder? Where are the reporter at polling stations? Not interviewing people at the polling stations folks? And lots of postal voting!

    I suspect something dodgy happening - I do hope the international election monitors are alert! ;-)

  • Comment number 40.

    On the exit poll results Labour couldn't form a government with the Liberal Democrats 255 + 59 gives 314, 12 short of a majority.

  • Comment number 41.

    I would like to know how much the BBC spent over the last month. The same raw data and subjective comments have been repeated on every other media channel. If the BBC had shown repeated episides of the old potters wheel the entire electorate of the UK would still not have missed a single fact as there are so many other people publishing every minute detail. Here was a golden chance for the BBC to save money which it cast aside.

  • Comment number 42.

    How can we get stable government as per these exit polls if Lab Lib Dem cannot combined reach the 326 target.

  • Comment number 43.

    Interesting that voters were turned away in Sheffield Hallam because of queues. There were also very long queues in Sheffield Central. Its just not right that voters should be turned away because election officials couldn't cope. There must be a better way.

  • Comment number 44.

    How many people have been turned away from polls? Kirsty Wark has met voters turned away in Sheffield. I have friends who are being allowed to queue in Honor Oak until midnight to vote. What is happening to maintain poll integrity and inclusion?

  • Comment number 45.

    Based on the exit poll, if Labour and the Lib Dems team up together it still doesn't give them a majority - 255+59=314 - they would still be reliant on the minor parties as well.

  • Comment number 46.

    t singh said he couldn't vote without a card - he is misinformed. As long as you are on the register all you have to do is turn up and quote your name and address.
    What a shame, he and his wife have been denied their democratic rights.

  • Comment number 47.

    I'm disguested that I have just been denied a vote. I have been at work all day so turned up to vote at 9.30 in Penistone. The queue was huge and people informed me it had been like that all day. We managed to get into the building but not to vote. There were only 2 people checking off details to allow votes. Many people in the queue had tried on 2 or 3 other occasions in the day and said it had been the same all day. Why didn't they put more people on? I wanted to have a say but now feel hard done by that I've not been able to. It makes me wonder how many other places this happened in and therefore how valid the final count will be!

  • Comment number 48.

    would somebody please just sack Jeremy Paxman. Why does he have to be so aggressive.

  • Comment number 49.

    If the UK has been spared the horror of a Conservative government, then this is truly a great day. I suspect that a Labour/LibDem coalition government will emerge.

  • Comment number 50.

    OH well, our chance has passed again to vote on which bunch of baffoons gets to attempt to wreck the country for the next five years. Cameron I can't stand, Clegg is a joke, Brown as a man is the best of the lot but his party cannot be allowed to continue, BNP are un-voteable, the Greens - why bother - that leaves the independents, UKIP and the Monster Raving Looney Party or whatever form it takes now. How I wish for the chance to vote X for 'None Of The Above'.

  • Comment number 51.

    I'm a first time voter.
    I voted because i think its important.
    I hope David Cameron doesn't win. I really can't stand the man.

    I don't think the exit poll is right as i spoke to a few people who said they weren't asked who they voted for.

    As usual i suppose my area was ignored.

  • Comment number 52.

    It would be much appreciated if, when Jeremy Paxman asks one of his 'guests' a question he at least has the courtesy to allow time for the guest to respond before interrupting!

  • Comment number 53.

    I think it is great news that there were queues at the polling stations, at least this means peeps were trying to excercise their rights to vote - for change!

  • Comment number 54.

    I really hope that white, middle-class, university-educated bloke with the nice wife who gave him 3 kids and keeps a nice Christian household wins

  • Comment number 55.

    All this talk of a Lab/Lib Dem coalition on youre exit poll they would still not have a majority on 314 they would still be 8 seats short

  • Comment number 56.

    What are the PERCENTAGES from the exit poll?

    Is it, for example, the case that the Lib Dem share of the vote has increased, while their share of seats in the Commons has decreased ... this is a key statistic we need to know for all parties to talk of legitimacy in relation to forming a new government.

  • Comment number 57.

    Hundreds unable to vote in Hackney South - turned away with long queues when polls closed at 10pm

  • Comment number 58.

    The BBC web site says 326 seats are required to win, but surely only 325 seats are required since there are only 649 constituencies voting today?

    Given how close this looks like being, this could be an important distinction!

  • Comment number 59.

    20-25% of voters voted using postal votes about a week ago, so what is the use of the exit polls as they can not take these into account. Also because I am bloody minded I would never tell anybody who asked me outside a polling station who I actually voted for, I would tell them another party, I am sure that there will have been a few with the same view as me.
    As to the election if the liberals poll around 25% of the votes and only get say 60 seats, the election is a joke. If that happened to the Tories or labour their supporters would be on the streets rioting. The lib dems won't do this, but should be.

  • Comment number 60.

    After the IRAQ war, the Expenses scandal and the £5bn pension raid I just pray that Brown does not get in again. We have had 13 years of hard Labour. Enough is enough.

  • Comment number 61.

    How are we supposed to have any kind of proper debate when all comments are pre-moderated and you already can't keep up by posting them? It makes a mockery of the idea of an internet discussion.

  • Comment number 62.

    I would like to make it known that having turned up to the polling centre at 2045 I have been denied the right to vote due to the incompetence of the electoral commission. The polling centre we were assigned to serviced two polling stations with only 2 people at each station. At 2130 the Mayor turned up and calculated that there were 400 people still waiting to vote. At this point she called for extra help, of which only 1 person turned up with only 5 minutes till the polling stations closed. Not only were 400 people turned away, there were countless people turning up to vote who decided not to wait. Given that this Withington seat is a very closely fought this result cannot stand and a re-election should be assigned to this ward.

  • Comment number 63.

    Arrived at a polling station in Liverpool at around 8.30pm but there were no ballot slips left (either national or local). Returned an hour later to find slips had arrived for the general - but not local - election. Lots of people still waiting at quarter to ten...

  • Comment number 64.

    Not a good start to your election programme. Peter Mandelson AND Jeremy Paxman starting your coverage? Come on....!

  • Comment number 65.

    Its a shame that the only thing spoiling my viewing tonight of the general election on the BBC is Jeremy Paxman and his interview 'technique'. If he is there to interview / discuss with guests, can he not allow them to finish a sentence without rudely interupting them? Surely he could have the manners to wait for them to complete a sentence (or even start a sentence). Am I the only one that finds this annoying?

  • Comment number 66.

    After a month of
    A vote for Nick Clegg is a vote for the Labour party
    v
    A vote for Nick Clegg is a vote for the Tory party
    When will a vote for Nick Clegg be a vote for the Liberal Democrats?

  • Comment number 67.

    I believe a lib/labour situation would completely lack legitimacy. The conservative government will be voted in if the liberals were to form a deal with labour, we would see an undemocratic government in power. Labour must accept defeat and give Cameron his rightful place in No.10!

  • Comment number 68.

    see the BBC has gone for minor celebrity politics - what's that all about then? Where is the public ?

  • Comment number 69.

    If the LibDems have achieved 25 per cent or better of the overall vote and still wind up with only 60 seats, I sincerely hope there will be protests.

    We shouldn't stand for Cameron or Brown claiming to represent a majority of the British people just on the basis that their voting base is more concentrated than the LibDems.

    This exit poll hints at what we've discovered these past few weeks - our current electoral system is not real democracy.

  • Comment number 70.

    What's happening in Greece and the World money markets will have more effect on the UK than this sideshow.

  • Comment number 71.

    The situation with people being turned away from polling stations at 10.00pm is appalling. Even emerging democracies in Africa normally now get this right; they put an official at the end of the line at close of polls to ensure that everyone who had arrived in time to vote gets to vote, and those who arrive afterwards don't.

  • Comment number 72.

    If the Tories get in this country is finished. Personally I think we should have proportional representation. That way the politicians would have to work a lot harder to win our vote. I don't think a hung Parliament's a bad thing, because in the end they'll have to agree on something just like other countries with coalition governments.

  • Comment number 73.

    Sunderland Result.

    As leader of the Northern Rock NE Shareholder Action Group (and lead plaintiff for the Small Shareholder legal case nationally) I campaigned heavily on the streets of Sunderland.

    I can say that the pensioners and others of Sunderland - traditionally in the Labour heartland - are disenchanted with this thoroughly disingenuous Labour Government particularly because of the treatment of their local bank and its small shareholders, and I predict that Labour will see a dramatic fall in their support in this area as a result.

    Thank you
    Dennis GRAINGER

  • Comment number 74.

    Did anyone else notice the officials noting your electoral role number against your ballot paper number?

    This means that election officials can find out who you, personally, voted for.

    Once counted there will be a pile of ballot papers for each candidate, an election official could go through that pile and match up the ballot paper numbers with individual voters.

    So, if you voted for the loosing party. Watch out!

  • Comment number 75.

    My son is a student in Sheffield and was at the polling station at 8:30 but due to the inability of the polling station to cope with the numbers they had not voted by 10:00pm and were refused the right to vote.
    The polling station also gave priority to the local residents.
    Surely this is illegal - effectively saying that students votes are less important than residents and also not extending the voting time to allow for the inability of the system to cope.
    Surely the result should be null & void and a new poll scheduled!

  • Comment number 76.

    Thanks Phil @22. At 10:22pm. Did anyone else had problems voting?

  • Comment number 77.

    The result from my class election today are as follows:
    Conservatives: 7
    Labour: 2
    Liberal Democrat: 20!!
    Green Party: 2
    While not the same as the rest of the school it appeared at last count that the lib dems were in the lead. The seat, in which we sit, is a conservative stronghold.

  • Comment number 78.

    people being turned away from polling stations!?!??!?!?! terrible, thats not what i call democracy, they should have just extended the time!!!

  • Comment number 79.

    Tried to vote twice. Two hour queue. At 10pm no more votes allowed and up to 1000 people still waiting in the rain. A very British inflexibility; or stupidity.
    This is Clegg's seat. Shouldn't this count be abandoned?
    A lot of people have been disenfranchised because of idiocy. Where is the commonsense?

  • Comment number 80.

    Juliette Ash, Conservative
    Ann Clwyd, Labour *
    Dafydd Davies, Plaid Cymru
    Frank Hughes, UK Independence Party
    Lee Thacker, Liberal Democrat

    Was their a election on today well if you had to rely on the People above you would have known.

  • Comment number 81.

    My daughter tried to vote in Sheffield Central, but the turnout was so great, that after standing for hours in the rain until 10pm a large number of voters were turned away. This is outrageous and is hardly likely to encourage anyone to vote in the future!
    The resources were swamped by the number who wanted to vote, but surely someone could have predicted this?

  • Comment number 82.

    Some are talking about a Lib Dem/Labour group to form a government but this would sill not give an overall majority in the house. This election is all about the Other parties and who they decide to support.

  • Comment number 83.

    If the exit polls are accurate, and there's no single party with a majority, then there's no way either Labour or the Conservatives can fairly claim a legitimate right to govern alone. There just wouldn't be a mandate, and co-operation or coalition would be necessary.

  • Comment number 84.

    Alan Johnson on TV now looks like he's at a job interview: new hair-do, big smile...
    oh, he is.

  • Comment number 85.

    I am surprised by the overwhelming agreement that electoral reform is necessary. I was at University in New Zealand when we moved from First Past the Post to a form of proportional representation.

    One disappointing result of New Zealand's change was that weak candidates from minor parties entered parliament.

    One result of proportional representation in the UK would mostly likely be a significant presence of the BNP in parliament. This strikes me as a strong argument for First Past the Post.

  • Comment number 86.

    Please can you acknowledge that in Buckingham where John Bercow is the "sitting MP" and Speaker of the House, that NO main stream Party has fielded a candidate? I am 41 years of age and my late father would turn in his grave to know that as a WW2 veteran of Bomber Command his children could not vote democratically. I am outraged.

  • Comment number 87.

    Been a Labour man most of my life but I positively hate this deceitful government. I really can't see how this country can be stupid enough to vote them in again and will despair if the conservatives don't get a working majority.

  • Comment number 88.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 89.

    Playing with the BBC seat tool you get the following % share of the vote with that seat count

    Conservative 37.1%
    Labour 28.2%
    Liberal Democrat 20.7%
    Others 14%

    The exit poll of a flat share of the vote. They key issue will be the position in marginal seats. If the Liberal vote is stronger in marginal seats then this may impact the Conservatives more than Labour.

    An interesting night ahead.


    I don't understand why anyone would call that decisive on any side. With that seat count the Conservatives would give very little ground to LDs demands so a Conservative minority government or a formal Liberal Democrat / Labour coalition seems the likely outcome.

    If the Liberal Democrats really do that badly then their option to force electoral reform though a LD/Labour coalition will be pretty strong. Labour might give way on a number of LD demand to get that.

  • Comment number 90.

    We dont need a tory government remember thatcher the milk snatcher.....

    A lot of people have short memories the torys are the main reason why peoples electric meters go round quicker than a centrifuge.....

    These parasites whos leader is eton educated and has links to the royal family have no idea about the lower class......

    Torys rich mans party always has been and always will be...

    People will die on hospital waiting lists if these idiots get in.....

    Got to be labour for me....

    If the torys get in be carefull what you have wished for....



  • Comment number 91.

    What possible insight can Bruce Forsyth bring to this??? Such a trivialising of what could be the most important election of modern times is unbelievable. BBC, you should hang your head in shame!

  • Comment number 92.

    The exit poll is probably out by some way as usual. The poor old politicians will be having a long tense night ahead.

    Whatever the result it is certainly not appearing to be decisive for anyone and reinforces the need for reform in future.

  • Comment number 93.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 94.


    19
    Mr Singh
    You don't need a voting card to vote.
    Too late to do anything about it now, but next time, just turn up at the polling station anyway.

  • Comment number 95.

    OUTRAGEOUS. 40 minutes queuing to vote in Nick Cleggs constituency, Ranmoor, Sheffield. Herded into the polling station at 9.58pm, locked in.... only to be told at 10pm we were unable to vote. Over 250 people REFUSED the vote. DISGRACEFUL.

  • Comment number 96.

    Just tried to vote in Penistone and Stocksbridge, queued for 3/4 hour, turned away as reached table, approximately 70 people behind me. Angry and frustrated.

  • Comment number 97.

    I can't believe that the sneaky coniving Labour party are considering a coalition with the Liberals should the Conservatives win more votes than they do.
    Equally that the Lib Dems are suggesting they would agree.
    I am sure had these parties said this during the run up to the election then the people of this country would vote for neither Labour nor Lib Dem.
    I wouldn't be surprised if this was to happen, that it would not provoke a revolution.
    It's a disgrace.

  • Comment number 98.

    How can it be legal to turn people away from polling stations??

  • Comment number 99.

    >>> 19. At 10:20pm on 06 May 2010, t singh wrote:
    well i feel this election has been a farce
    my wife and i hadnt even received voting cards so we were unable to vote


    You don't need to take a polling card to vote.

  • Comment number 100.

    I am in my 20's and have voted for the first time in my life today. I hope to see some positive change for this country. From what I can see though 'a hung parliament' isn't going to be a good thing. Can anyone help me out here? Is this going to be a neg/pos result?? It's all very confusing to me!

 

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