UK Labour Party sweeps to power in historic election win

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(AP) — Britain’s Labour Party swept to power Friday after more than a decade in opposition, as a jaded electorate handed the party a landslide victory — but also a mammoth task of reinvigorating a stagnant economy and dispirited nation.

Labour leader Keir Starmer will officially become prime minister later in the day, leading his party back to government less than five years after it suffered its worst defeat in almost a century. In the merciless choreography of British politics, he will take charge in 10 Downing St. hours after Thursday’s votes are counted — as Conservative leader Rishi Sunak is hustled out.

“A mandate like this comes with a great responsibility,” Starmer acknowledged in a speech to supporters, saying that the fight to regain people’s trust after years of disillusionment “is the battle that defines our age.”

UK’s Labour will form the next government. Follow AP’s live coverage of the election.

Here’s what to know:

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British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said opposition Labour Party has won the UK election as his Conservatives face a rout.

Speaking as dawn broke in London, he said Labour would offer “the sunlight of hope, pale at first but getting stronger through the day.”

Sunak conceded defeat, saying the voters had delivered a “sobering verdict.”

Labour’s triumph and challenges

With almost all the results in, Labour had won 410 seats in the 650-seat House of Commons and the Conservatives 118.

For Starmer, it’s a massive triumph that will bring huge challenges, as he faces a weary electorate impatient for change against a gloomy backdrop of economic malaise, mounting distrust in institutions and a fraying social fabric.

“Nothing has gone well in the last 14 years,” said London voter James Erskine, who was optimistic for change in the hours before polls closed. “I just see this as the potential for a seismic shift, and that’s what I’m hoping for.”

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Labour Party leader Keir Starmer kisses his wife Victoria after he spoke to his supporters at the Tate Modern in London, Friday, July 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

And that’s what Starmer promised, saying “change begins now.”

Anand Menon, professor of European Politics and Foreign Affairs at King’s College London, said British voters were about to see a marked change in political atmosphere from the tumultuous “politics as pantomime” of the last few years.

“I think we’re going to have to get used again to relatively stable government, with ministers staying in power for quite a long time, and with government being able to think beyond the very short term to medium-term objectives,” he said.

Britain has experienced a run of turbulent years — some of it of the Conservatives’ own making and some of it not — that has left many voters pessimistic about their country’s future. The U.K.’s exit from the European Union followed by the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine battered the economy, while lockdown-breaching parties held by then-Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his staff caused widespread anger.

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8 COMMENTS

  1. This is an illustration of the changing of the guard because the more things change the more things remain the same, it’s white ideology in charge still, so they will side with israhell to kill babies and side zelenski to allow NATO USA bombs to be planted in Ukraine to pull a surprise attack on Russia and the support of white monopoly capital domination in south Africa.

  2. Long Live the Labour Party. Now we can all breathe a sigh of relief. Normality, civility and prosperity will be restored in England.
    When The Labour Party wins, we all win.

  3. This was totally expected as it clear that Rishi Sunak wanted to abandon his Prime Ministerial position and his party’s Conservative style of government. The Labour Party has won handsomely after 14 years being in opposition with 412 seats to the Conservative Party’s 121, The other splinter parties shared the 67 seats between them. I wish the new Prime Minister, Keir Starmer well in his new role.

  4. Here are the 10 MAIN reasons why Keir Starmer’s remarkable win dismantled the CON-servatives, why the ABLP and Gaston Browne will be heavily defeated:

    1. Cronyism. The PPE medical expenses scam amongst members and friends

    2. Partying during the Covid-19 pandemic, whilst the rest of the UK (and the world) were in lockdown

    3. Promising to build more houses

    4. Long waiting lists at NHS hospitals

    5. Zero hours contracts. Scandalous!

    6. Leaving the European Union (Brexit), and causing economic hardship to its citizenry

    7. The roll-out of the deadly AstraZeneca vaccine, and not informing the public at large of the “discovered” dangers

    8. The steep rise in food banks – even amongst working couples!

    9. The inflation busting rises of utility bills

    10. Circumventing the laws of the country to suit and benefit their agendas

    Most of the above will sound familiar to honest and hardworking Antiguans and Barbudans; and it’s an absolute miracle that the ABLP is STILL governing this country.

    ROLL ON 2028 … 🟨🟦🟨🟦🟨🟦

  5. @Eldread. Well said, few know the History of the 1884 Berlin Conference and why Africa was further subjugated and colonized to a point that it will take a millennium for future generations to recover.

  6. @@Brixtonian:
    Point #6 of your 10 reasons why the Conservative Party lost is false. This means that your other 9 points are dubious at best.

    Nigel Farage, Britain’s veteran political disrupter and Brexit campaigner, saw his new anti-immigration Reform U.K. party secure five seats in Parliament and it could have been more. Reform won more than four million votes nationwide — around 14 percent — making it Britain’s third most successful party by that measure.
    This third party ran in eight elections was successful only this time. He is a Brexit believer.
    The Conservative Party became dysfunctionally toxic internally, and their display in Parliament against their own proved the disunity among the masses. The turnout was low and the incumbent still lost badly. A rather unorthodox anomaly.

  7. @@Brixtonian:
    Point #6 of your 10 reasons why the Conservative Party lost is false. This means that your other 9 points are dubious at best.

    Nigel Farage, Britain’s veteran political disrupter and Brexit campaigner, saw his new anti-immigration Reform U.K. party secure five seats in Parliament and it could have been more. Reform won more than four million votes nationwide — around 14 percent — making it Britain’s third most successful party by that measure.

    This third party ran in eight elections was successful only this time.

    He is a Brexit believer. So, go figure!
    The Conservative Party became dysfunctionally toxic internally, and their display in Parliament against their own proved the disunity among the masses.

    The turnout was low and the incumbent still lost badly. A rather unorthodox anomaly.

  8. Okaaaay @ Dave Ray (and you knew I would come back at you 😁), then if YOU believe that my other nine EXCELLENT points aren’t correct, then break down each and everyone of them and tell myself and other like-minded readers why so, instead of throwing out ‘tupid soundbites like, “your other 9 points are dubious at best …”

    COME ON DAVE RAY, I THOUGHT THAT YOUR SO-CALLED INTELLECT WAS WAY ABOVE THE ABLP NORM …

    Please accept my sincere apologies – I was wrong, unless you respond to my other 9 points.

    Oh no, not more crickets 🦗🦗🦗🦗in the distance once more from you my dear adversary

    Mi love ANR so till 😉

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