Boris Johnson pays tribute to “historic election” victory after Tories secure commanding majority
Boris Johnson has paid tribute to the British electorate after the results of Thursday’s national poll delivered “a powerful new mandate” for a “One Nation Conservative government”.
The Conservatives had secured 364 out of the total 650 seats, with one constituency, St Ives, left to declare.
It was the biggest Conservative majority since that secured by Margaret Thatcher in the election of 1987, and upon his re-election in the Uxbridge and South Ruislip constituency, Johnson called the exit poll forecast “historic”.
Johnson said: “This has turned out to be an historic election that gives us now, in this new government, the chance to respect the democratic will of the entire people of this country”, adding that the work would begin “today”.
The Conservative victory has been underpinned by a range of swings in traditional Labour seats across the north of England, the Midlands and Wales.
Indeed, the first gain for the Tories from Labour was in Blyth Valley, Northumberland, a former mining community which had been represented by a Labour MP since 1950. This was just one of a number of key triumphs in seats which had overwhelmingly voted Leave in the EU referendum of 2016.
Conservative MP Mark Francois told the BBC that the Conservatives intend to deliver on their promises to voters in Leave constituencies which still have high levels of poverty.
Francois said: “They put their trust in the prime minister, we must be worth of that trust”.
Heidi Allen, a former Conservative MP who defected over Brexit, said that the election result saw a "hard-right government" take control of a UK which in a "very bad place for democracy".
She also took aim at the Labour Party, which she said had "failed to do its job” as official opposition.