07/05/2015 22:17 BST | Updated 04/01/2016 11:59 GMT

General Election Results Suggests David Cameron Could Win Overall Majority, Says Election Expert

Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
Prime Minister David Cameron attends a rally at Hetherington Livestock Mart in Carlisle, during General Election campaigning. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday May 6, 2015. See PA story ELECTION Tories. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

David Cameron looks set to remain in office as prime minister, as the Conservative Party appears to have massively out performed pre-election predictions and emerge from the election as the largest party in a hung parliament with 316 seats.

Ed Miliband's leadership of Labour was already being questioned in the early hours of Friday morning, as the exit poll predicted he would secure just 239 seats - 17 fewer than their tally at the start of the election campaign.

It is also possible that the Conservative Party is outperforming the exit poll released at 10pm and could secure an overall Commons majority.

Nicola Sturgeon's SNP looks to have swept Scotland and is on course to win 58 out of Scotland's 59 MPs. Labour's campaign chief and shadow foreign secretary Douglas Alexander and Scottish leader Jim Murphy have both lost their seats.

It looks like an awful night for Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats who may see their party reduced to a rump of just 10 MPs - down from the 57 the party had in the last parliament.

Ukip, according to the exit poll, could win only two MPs despite possibly ending up as the third largest party in terms of national vote share. Nigel Farage is also rumoured to have failed to win the fight for South Thanet, which would likely see him quit as party leader.

Professor John Curtice, the BBC's election guru, pointed to the result in the marginal Nuneaton seat as a hint Cameron may be able to win a majority. "We were expecting a one-point swing to Labour in Nuneaton. In practise with a three-point swing to themselves, the Tories have succeeded in defending this highly marginal seat. In practise we now have to take seriously the possibility that the Tories could get an overall majority," he said.

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