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PM May loses Parliamentary majority in election gamble

LONDON  Britain’s Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May gambled in calling a national election, thinking she could cruise to a big win. 

UK Prime Minister Theresa May

She appeared early Friday morning looking shaken, chastened and beaten — odd for somebody whose party won more seats than any other, perhaps, but as CBS News’ Mark Phillips reports, the way British politics works, her party’s narrow victory amounted to an effective defeat: She lost her majority in Parliament.

Pressure mounted on her to resign, but she refused — at least for now. Instead,  May visited Queen Elizabeth II and informed her that she would seek to form a coalition government with a much smaller party from Northern Ireland

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Theresa May says she will seek coalition after bruising election

The stunning result throws British politics into chaos and could send Britain’s negotiations to leave the European Union — due to start June 19 — into disarray. The British pound lost more than 2 cents against the dollar in initial trading as results became clear.

Without a majority in Parliament, May’s authority is greatly eroded and her Conservative Party will struggle to push through its vision of a “hard Brexit”; one that would see Britain unbound from the key tenets of the EU which require, among other things, a free flow of goods and people across state borders. May’s vision of Brexit calls for tariffs on EU goods imported into Britain.

In spite of the dramatic losses for the Conservatives, they remained the party with the most votes, and May made it clear she was not abandoning her post. She said she would form a coalition government with the Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland. Cutting a deal with the DUP could allow May to remain in the Prime Minister’s office, albeit with a far weaker mandate.

She insisted, in a statement announcing the effort to form a coaltion with the DUP, that Brexit negotiations would begin as scheduled on June 19 as previously expected.

The Democratic Unionists will only support a Conservative government if Northern Ireland is not granted any unique special status that would keep the region halfway inside the EU, the party’s leader at Westminster has confirmed.

Nigel Dodds, who was re-elected in his North Belfast seat, said the DUP would insist there would be no post-Brexit deal that could decouple Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK.

It will be one of the DUP’s key preconditions in negotiations with the Tories to help them form a new administration.

With one eye on the Brexit negotiations, which begin within the next 10 to 11 days, Dodds said: “There are special circumstances in Northern Ireland and we will try to make sure these are recognised.

“As regards demands for special status within the European Union, no. Because that would create tariffs and barriers between Northern Ireland and our single biggest market which is the rest of the United Kingdom.

“While we will focus on the special circumstances, geography and certain industries of Northern Ireland, we will be pressing that home very strongly. Special status however within the European Union is a nonsense. Dublin doesn’t support it.

“Brussels doesn’t support it. The member states of the EU would never dream of it because it would open the door to a Pandora’s box of independence movements of all sorts. The only people who mentioned this are Sinn Féin.”

The DUP won 10 of the 18 Northern Ireland seats with Sinn Féin winning seven and the remaining seat in North Down still in the hands of the Independent Unionist Lady Sylvia Hermon.

Who will “win” Brexit: the U.K. or Europe?

May vowed to form, “a government that can provide certainty and lead Britain forward at this critical time for our country. This government will guide the country through the crucial Brexit talks that begin in just 10 days and to deliver on the will of the British people by taking the United Kingdom out of the European Union.” 

 

In the end, any coalition government May manages to pull together could be so weak that another national election is called — possibly even this year

Total seats won

Con                 Lab                        LD                         SNP                     DUP       10 (+2)

318                  262                       12                    35                    Others 12

(-13)                 (+32)              (+3)                 (-19)                Green 1 (0)

Ukip 0

Gains and losses

  • Con -13
  • Lab +32
  • SNP -19
  • LD +3
  • UKIP 0
  • Green 0

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

LONDON  Britain’s Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May gambled in calling a national election, thinking she could cruise to a big win. 

UK Prime Minister Theresa May

She appeared early Friday morning looking shaken, chastened and beaten — odd for somebody whose party won more seats than any other, perhaps, but as CBS News’ Mark Phillips reports, the way British politics works, her party’s narrow victory amounted to an effective defeat: She lost her majority in Parliament.

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Pressure mounted on her to resign, but she refused — at least for now. Instead,  May visited Queen Elizabeth II and informed her that she would seek to form a coalition government with a much smaller party from Northern Ireland

Play Video

Theresa May says she will seek coalition after bruising election

The stunning result throws British politics into chaos and could send Britain’s negotiations to leave the European Union — due to start June 19 — into disarray. The British pound lost more than 2 cents against the dollar in initial trading as results became clear.

Without a majority in Parliament, May’s authority is greatly eroded and her Conservative Party will struggle to push through its vision of a “hard Brexit”; one that would see Britain unbound from the key tenets of the EU which require, among other things, a free flow of goods and people across state borders. May’s vision of Brexit calls for tariffs on EU goods imported into Britain.

In spite of the dramatic losses for the Conservatives, they remained the party with the most votes, and May made it clear she was not abandoning her post. She said she would form a coalition government with the Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland. Cutting a deal with the DUP could allow May to remain in the Prime Minister’s office, albeit with a far weaker mandate.

She insisted, in a statement announcing the effort to form a coaltion with the DUP, that Brexit negotiations would begin as scheduled on June 19 as previously expected.

The Democratic Unionists will only support a Conservative government if Northern Ireland is not granted any unique special status that would keep the region halfway inside the EU, the party’s leader at Westminster has confirmed.

Nigel Dodds, who was re-elected in his North Belfast seat, said the DUP would insist there would be no post-Brexit deal that could decouple Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK.

It will be one of the DUP’s key preconditions in negotiations with the Tories to help them form a new administration.

With one eye on the Brexit negotiations, which begin within the next 10 to 11 days, Dodds said: “There are special circumstances in Northern Ireland and we will try to make sure these are recognised.

“As regards demands for special status within the European Union, no. Because that would create tariffs and barriers between Northern Ireland and our single biggest market which is the rest of the United Kingdom.

“While we will focus on the special circumstances, geography and certain industries of Northern Ireland, we will be pressing that home very strongly. Special status however within the European Union is a nonsense. Dublin doesn’t support it.

“Brussels doesn’t support it. The member states of the EU would never dream of it because it would open the door to a Pandora’s box of independence movements of all sorts. The only people who mentioned this are Sinn Féin.”

The DUP won 10 of the 18 Northern Ireland seats with Sinn Féin winning seven and the remaining seat in North Down still in the hands of the Independent Unionist Lady Sylvia Hermon.

Who will “win” Brexit: the U.K. or Europe?

May vowed to form, “a government that can provide certainty and lead Britain forward at this critical time for our country. This government will guide the country through the crucial Brexit talks that begin in just 10 days and to deliver on the will of the British people by taking the United Kingdom out of the European Union.” 

 

In the end, any coalition government May manages to pull together could be so weak that another national election is called — possibly even this year

Total seats won

Con                 Lab                        LD                         SNP                     DUP       10 (+2)

318                  262                       12                    35                    Others 12

(-13)                 (+32)              (+3)                 (-19)                Green 1 (0)

Ukip 0

Gains and losses