Final polls show Tory lead in tightest election for years
Final opinion polls of the general population put the Conservative Party in the lead for today’s election.
An Ipso-Mori poll for the Evening Standard puts the party on 36 per cent, with Labour on 29 per cent and the Liberal Democrats on 27 per cent.
A Populous poll for the Times places the Tories on 37 per cent, with Labour at 28 per cent and the Liberal Democrats on 27 per cent.
Meanwhile, a ICM poll for the Guardian showed the Tories on 36 per cent, Labour on 28 per cent and the Liberal Democrats on 26 per cent.
However, they suggest a hung parliament is the most likely result, as David Cameron’s party may not gain enough seats for an overall majority.
The most recent PinkNews.co.uk poll, taken at the weekend, showed inverse results.
The survey of almost 1,000 of our readers found that only six per cent intend to vote Tory, compared with 57 per cent for the Liberal Democrats and 29 per cent for Labour.
In the 2005 general election, 17 per cent of that sample said they voted Tory, with 29 per cent saying they voted Labour and 20 per cent saying they supported the Liberal Democrats.
Gay issues have featured strongly in the election campaign, with a number of Conservative candidates hitting the headlines for their views. The most recent is Sutton and Cheam candidate Philippa Stroud, who, it is claimed, tried to “cure” gay people ten years ago.
In the last few months, each of the three main parties have directly addressed the gay community in interviews with PinkNews.co.uk.
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Labour leader and prime minister Gordon Brown reminded voters of his party’s achievements over the last 13 years, Tory leader David Cameron promised to quash convictions for historic gay sex offences and “consider” calling civil partnerships marriage, while Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg said he supported the case for full gay marriage.
Labour and the Liberal Democrats both released dedicated LGBT manifestos, while the Conservative Party released an equalities manifesto which included LGBT issues.
Polling stations opened at 7am this morning and will close at 10pm. The first results are expected an hour later, with reports throughout the night and into Friday morning.
Mr Cameron, accompanied by his wife Samantha, was the first leader to cast his vote this morning in his Witney constituency. Mr Brown and Sarah voted in his Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency half an hour later, while Mr Clegg was accompanied to the polling station in Sheffield Hallam with his wife Miriam Gonzalez Durantez, although as a Spanish citizen, she cannot vote for her husband.
Early reports from polling stations suggest one of the highest turnouts in years.
More than 44 million people are registered to vote in today’s election in 649 constituencies. In one constituency, Thirsk and Malton, constituents will not be able to vote until May 27th, due to the death of UKIP candidate John Boakes.
More: General Election 2010