Conservative sources suggest @jacksoncarlaw will be very comfortable in Eastwood. Possibility of a big share – 45%. Big shock maybe on the West list – Conservative vote may stand at 50%. That would be a massive 20% increase.
— BBC Andrew Kerr (@BBCandrewkerr) May 7, 2021
- The Conservatives have fallen short in Banffshire and Buchan Coast, an area where they have managed to retain MPs at Westminster. There was a substantial swing to them from the Nationalists, but not enough. This is also the area of Scotland that almost voted Leave.
- If the SNP didn’t lose this, the odds of their losing any seats are minimal. However, John Curtice says that they are not currently doing well enough for a majority.
- Some on Twitter are blaming Labour and the Lib Dems for denying a pro-UK MSP, but the problem has always been that a chunk of their voters simply will not vote Tory.
- But there are rumours that there could be good news for the Conservatives elsewhere, as per the above tweet. Could be a product of a concerted effort by pro-UK sources – especially the Scottish Daily Mail – to get pro-UK voters to give their regional vote to the Tories.
This election, for Wales, don’t see England. Labour may lose some seats as a result of the electoral system but looks like avoiding the fate of the party elsewhere in the UK while the Conservatives appear to be on course for disappointment despite an upward trajectory in England
— Adrian Masters (@adrianmasters84) May 7, 2021
- The Conservatives have doubled their majority in Montgomeryshire, benefiting from the absence of UKIP. Most parties vote share is up a bit save for the Lib Dems’, which as fallen by almost 11 points.
- Despite the above, the chatter seems to be of an overall disappointing election for the Conservatives relative to expectations. One local source said: “Well at the beginning we thought we were doing well across Wales. But now it’s sliding – seats which should have been a shoe in are tight.”
- Why might this be? Two suggested reasons: first, that Plaid Cymru’s poor performance means the left/nationalist vote isn’t splitting.
- Second, that the Conservatives have once again failed to mobilised the hundreds and thousands of their voters who usually sit out devolved elections. “The party think they’ve killed the Abolish vote, but that could be at the expense of keeping it at home.”
- Does the Montgomeryshire result auger ill for the Lib Dems in neighbouring Brecon and Radnorshire? They had a big majority last time but it was competitive in 2011, the corresponding Westminster seat is safely Tory, and popular incumbent Kirsty Williams is standing down.
— Andrew Bowie MP (@AndrewBowie_MP) May 7, 2021
- We’re starting to get some results in. Aberdeen Donside is an SNP hold but with a swing to the Conservatives.
- The Liberal Democrats have also held their safe seat of Orkney, albeit with the Nationalists up.
- Tory sources suggest that there is evidence of unionist tactical voting in constituencies that already have a pro-UK MSP. If this holds, they think it will be very difficult for the SNP to secure an overall majority.
- However they do expect the Nationalists to take Edinburgh Central, which was a surprise gain for Ruth Davidson in 2016. They say this was a fluke and a personal vote, and the party did not expect to retain it. This will put Angus Robertson, formerly the SNP’s Westminster leader, in Holyrood.
- Word is that Alba have ‘bombed’, although they may pick up one or two seats. Their main impact may have been persuading SNP voters to split their tickets… for the Greens, who may take two or three list seats apiece off the Conservatives and Labour as a consequence.
— Ross Gardiner (@C_RGardiner) May 7, 2021
Henry Hill reporting.
- Results will soon start to come in from counts across Scotland and Wales. These elections could cast a long shadow over the rest of this Parliament if Boris Johnson is forced into a pitched battle for the future of the Union.
- In Scotland, there has been a huge surge in turnout. Unionists were initially extremely gloomy about this, but there are reports that it is also up in areas pro-UK parties were targeting.
- In Wales, sources last night suggested that the Conservatives were feeling bullish, with a sense that the wind had come out of Abolish the Assembly’s sails over the past week or so.
Results to watch out for in Scotland:
- Will the Scottish National Party secure an overall majority in the Scottish Parliament, or will they be forced once again to come to an arrangement with the Greens?
- Will the Scottish Tories hold on to second place, and defend marginal constituencies such as Eastwood?
- Conversely will Anas Sarwar’s Labour claw back second place, and hold ultra-marginal seats such as Dunbarton?
- Will either Alex Salmond (Alba Party) or George Galloway (All for Unity) manage to secure a seat?
Results to watch out for in Wales:
- Can the Conservatives build on the success of the 2019 general election and exceed the 14 seats they won in 2011?
- Will Abolish manage to consolidate enough of the old UKIP vote (which took seven seats in 2016) to win a place in the Senedd?
- Can the Tories build on the ‘red wall’ dynamic to start eating into traditional Labour seats (such as Torfaen). Can they take Gower?
- Can the Liberal Democrats hold their last seat in Brecon and Radnor, and if not will they get wiped out in Wales?
- Will Labour end up depending on a deal with Plaid Cymru to govern? Can they take Rhondda back from Leanne Wood?