LONDON (Reuters) – Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party will win a resounding victory in Britain’s election with a parliamentary majority of 86 seats, an exit poll showed on Thursday, empowering him to deliver Brexit on Jan. 31.
Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson waves as he arrives at a polling station, at the Methodist Central Hall, to vote in the general election in London, Britain, December 12, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya
The survey showed Johnson’s Conservatives would win a landslide of 368 seats, more than enough for a very comfortable majority in the 650-seat parliament and the biggest Conservative national election win since Margaret Thatcher’s 1987 triumph.
If the exit poll is accurate and Johnson’s bet on a snap election has paid off, he will move swiftly to ratify the Brexit deal he struck with the European Union so that the United Kingdom can leave on Jan. 31 – 10 months later than initially planned.
“I hope you enjoy a celebration tonight,” Johnson told supporters in an email. “With any luck, tomorrow we’ll be getting to work.”
Sterling surged more than 2% against the dollar and the euro on Thursday as traders piled into the pound. By 2225 GMT, the pound had rocketed as much as 2.5% to $1.3510 GBP=D3 – its biggest one day gain since January 2017.
Labour were forecast by the poll to win 191 seats, the worst result for the party since 1935. The Scottish National Party would win 55 seats and the Liberal Democrats 13, the poll said. The Brexit Party were not forecast to win any.
Official results will be declared over the next seven hours.
In the last five national elections, only one exit poll has got the outcome wrong –