8 May 2015 - Shock Tory victory in General Election

The Conservative Party has won a shock victory in the 2015 election, leaving Labour badly beaten and the Liberal Democrats crushed. While for months most people had expected a very close result, in the end the Conservatives won a majority of 12 overall, with Labour going backwards and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls losing his seat. In Scotland, the Scottish Nationalists crushed everyone, leaving Labour, Tory and Lib Dem with just one seat each. In England and Wales the Lib Dems lost 27 seats to the Tories and were left with just 8.

Senior Lib Dem MPs, like Vince Cable, Steve Webb, Simon Hughes and Charles Kennedy all lost. In Bristol South the result was in line with the national situation, with the Conservatives up slightly and the Lib Dems down dramatically, with most of the former liberal vote splitting between UKIP and the Green Party, allowing Labour to hold on comfortably. Candidate Mark Wright comments:

Obviously I am absolutely gutted about the national result, both at the terrible losses for the Lib Dems and for the prospect of a Conservative majority government. I was hoping to see Labour as the largest party supported by the Lib Dems, and I hope that this arrangement might lead to proper reform of the House of Lords and electoral system, and more fairness in the tax system, and so on. But instead now David Cameron is free to do all the things that we Lib Dem have prevented him doing over the last 5 years.

Anybody who doubts that the Lib Dems have had a moderating effect on the Conservatives over the past five years is about to learn very painfully what a full Conservative government is really like. I really think that the public will come to regret the scale of the punishment given to the Lib Dems, and that our loss of so many seats has helped result in a majority Conservative government.

But we are not dead, and we will be back. Already we have had an unprecedented surge of membership, and we will rebuild liberalism in the UK. We will continue to provide the unique political angle that we have done over the years, and will oppose the Conservatives as they embark on a now unrestrained mission to change the country to their liking.

Finally, I would like to congratulate Karin Smyth on her victory in Bristol South and wish her the best in her new role as MP.