General election live: Sunak says he will take full responsibility for election result after Tory minister predicts Labour landslide

Estimated read time 10 min read

Suella Braverman. Asked if he was the only Tory not resigned to defeat he replied: “No, that’s definitely not right.”

He claimed that large numbers of people had yet to decide:

There are lots of people who have not made up their minds – millions and millions. When they go to the ballots tomorrow I would just ask everyone to separate the frustrations which they understandably have about me, the party and the past from what a Labour government would mean for their families specifically.

He also claimed that the lack of recent questions to him about the cost of living meant things were improving – others might argue that it is mainly because most people don’t expect him to win. He said:

All those questions you used to ask me about the cost of living, in this campaign they have dissipated. I think that is a reflection of the fact that the economy is doing better.

Before the Q&A, Sunak toured the village primary school, based in the seat of Tory MP Caroline Nokes, who would normally expect to win again at a canter. He helped year three and four children with a maths lesson before going to a reception class, where he and Nokes made plasticine pizza slices with two girls – one of which would be topped with “ketchup and worms”.

Sitting on a blue plastic chair after, Sunak was asked what his highlight as prime minister had been. He somewhat dodged the question, but did accept that his time in office had often been a struggle with outside events.

There are lots of things that you’d like to do, but the reality is that you’re dealing with the situation in front of you. That’s very much been the story of my political career in the last few years. That’s just reality. You’ve got to play the cards that you’ve been dealt.

Asked if he would take full responsibility for whatever the election result was, he replied: “Yes”.

He has two more stops in what would normally be seen as safe Tory areas, now under threat from the Lib Dems, and then that’s it – back to his Yorkshire constituency. And then, most likely, not back to living at Downing Street at all.

Rishi Sunak with a pupil at Braishfield Primary School in Romsey, Hampshire this afternoon.

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sign up for First Edition here, where Nimo Omer and I will be rounding up what’s just happened at 7am. And on Friday, you’ll receive your last Election Edition of this cycle (don’t cry) at 5pm. And then we can all get some sleep.Labour.

She told the PA news agency that the Conservatives have “taken a wrecking ball to standards in public life”.

She said: “We’ve always said that our target is to remove as many Conservative MPs as possible. We are in second place to the Conservatives in around 80 seats around the country, and we’ve had to target our resources in those areas.”

According to the PA news agency, she would not be drawn on what number of new seats would be considered a success, saying that “every single extra Liberal Democrat MP” will be a voice to campaign for the NHS, social services and the raw sewage crisis.

An MRP poll today has forecast the Lib Dems could get 52 seats and 13.5% of the vote share. Only 11 Lib Dems were elected in 2019.

Speaking about the party’s series of stunts during the general election campaign, Cooper said:

The fact is that every single stunt we do comes with a very serious message. So when Ed was falling off the paddle board, he was highlighting our pledge to put an end to the raw sewage dumping scandal.

When he was at a water park in half-term, he was talking about our pledge to put a mental health expert into every primary and secondary school.

So every time there’s a stunt, there’s also a very serious message. And whilst we don’t take ourselves very seriously, we do take our politics very seriously.”

She said stunts knocking down blue dominoes and blue bricks were an effort to “hammer home” the message that the Lib Dems are seeking to oust Tories.

Cooper told the PA news agency:

There were some really difficult decisions that the Liberal Democrats had to take during coalition, and we were punished, and that’s democracy.

But I think people will now be looking at the Conservative party, and they will see what the Conservatives do when they are in power on their own, and when people go to the polls tomorrow, they will be very acutely conscious that our NHS is on its knees, that families have been abandoned and left to tackle the cost-of-living crisis and our local environment simply isn’t safe in Conservative hands.

I think the Conservatives have taken a wrecking ball to standards in public life, and people are just sick to the back teeth of sleaze and scandals. And when people go to vote tomorrow, I think that’s what they’ll have at the forefront of their minds.”

Labour would win as much as 37% of the vote and that his party would be “challenging for government” at the next election.

“Twenty five years ago, I became an MEP and I used that to build up into quite a considerable political force. We’ll do the same again.”

Northern Ireland’s first minister, appealed to voters to return the strongest Sinn Féin team by voting for its party candidates in the 14 constituencies in which they are standing. She also appealed to voters to vote for progressive candidates in the four areas in which Sinn Féin are not standing.

O’Neill said:

Thursday’s Westminster election is your chance to vote for strong leadership.

It is an opportunity to endorse Sinn Féin’s vision for positive change and our commitment to work for all.

No matter what background or community people come from, Sinn Féin MPs will work hard and deliver on the things that matter to workers, families and businesses.

You can support better funding for our public services, and reject years of Tory cuts which have targeted workers and families.

Change will only be delivered in the north by working together in the executive and assembly, but this election is our chance to send a clear message about the future we want.

I am asking voters to join us in our journey towards a better future, to endorse our vision by returning the strongest Sinn Féin team.

It is clear that people want positive change, and I would urge people to support progressive candidates in areas where Sinn Féin are not standing, to maximise the number of progressive MPs.

Let’s work together. Let’s move forward together to a new and better future. On Thursday, I am asking you to vote for Sinn Féin.”

Labour leader stressed his desire to address the “shared challenge” presented by populism “across Europe and across the world”.

In recent days, after electoral successes for the populist National Rally party in France and polls suggesting Donald Trump could return to the White House, Starmer has spoken of the need to offer a “progressive” alternative to populism.

Asked by the PA news agency whether he felt pressure to prove that Labour’s programme could provide an alternative, he said: “Yes, I do think it’s really important that we make that case.”

On a campaign visit to East Kilbride, he said:

There are many challenges, probably more challenges now than there were over recent years, both here in the UK, here in Scotland and across the world, and we have to rise to those challenges and it has to be a progressive answer to those challenges.

Now obviously that starts tomorrow, I hope, in the UK, and here in Scotland as well, but it is then a shared challenge across Europe and across the world to meet the challenges of today with the answers of progressives.”

Asked how he felt about the prospect of entering Downing Street on Friday, he added:

While I recognise the responsibility, if we are elected to form a government tomorrow, I’ll see it all as an opportunity.

An opportunity to deliver 40,000 more NHS appointments a week, 6,500 more teachers, to grow our economy and get more money into people’s pockets. So yes, it’s huge, but it’s a huge chance to take our country forward.”

He made his comments after a campaign rally where he delivered his final message of encouragement to Scottish activists ahead of polling day.

Reflecting on the campaign on its last day, he told PA he had been “surprised by the negativity of the Tory campaign” with its focus on warning about a Labour “supermajority”.

He said:

They have literally nothing positive to say to the country and retreated into negativity.

I’m pleased that we have started positively and maintained that through the campaign and end positively, because we’ve got a strong case for change, and the message has been consistent from us because this is a change election.”

Labour getting more seats.

But the YouGov model does show the Liberal Democrats doing better than they do under other MRPs. Today’s YouGov MRP has the Lib Dems projected to win 72 seats, a record for the party. YouGov says:

Our final model has the Liberal Democrats winning a record high 72 seats – more than six times their 2019 tally and surpassing their 2005 record of 62 seats.

Based on 2019 nominal results, Ed Davey’s party are set to take 62 seats from the Conservatives while two are gains from the SNP.

Our model suggests that the party will perform best in the South, taking 23 seats in the South West and 25 seats in the South East.

Outside of the South the party is set to win 18 seats. Some of the closest races are in Scotland – one to watch is Edinburgh West.

There are similar scenes in London, where we expect the Lib Dems to collect a total of six seats in the capital. This includes Wimbledon – a seat dating back to 1885 where the Liberal Democrats have never won before.

On top of the 72 seats they’re expected to win, our model suggests that the Liberal Democrats are a close second in five further constituencies, in each case challenging the Tories.

That’s all from me for today. Amy Sedghi is taking over now.

Keir Starmer becomes PM on Friday, Keir Starmer will be plunged straight into an international agenda with French elections on Sunday projected to deliver the first far-right government in Europe.

Speaking to reporters in Scotland, Starmer said he was “concerned” about the rise of the far right in Europe and it was “important” they were met with countervailing force in from a progressive UK.

I’m very concerned about the rise of populism and nationalism across Europe and elsewhere. There are many challenges in the world. And it is very important that we meet those with a progressive government.

He also said he would work with his counterparts, even those on the far right.

If we’re elected into government, we will work with whoever is elected into government by the American people, as we will work with any European leader who is elected in by the people of their country.

On Scottish matters he mocked the SNP, saying he wanted Sctoland “send a government” to Westminster and not an opposition party. But he ducked questions from about Scotland’s place in the union, saying “tomorrow is a straight choice between more of the Tories or Labour government”.


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