Ed Miliband, Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage all resign following election disaster in the UK
Published 08/05/2015 | 12:26
The leaders of three of the biggest political parties in the UK have resigned.
Ed Miliband, Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage have all resigned following the disastrous performance of their respective parties in the UK's General Election overnight.
Miliband was the final leader to stand down, announcing his resignation just after midday today, and saying he accepted full responsibility for the party's comprehensive debate.
"This was not the speech I was expecting to make today. I believed Britain needed a Labour government - I still do but the public voted otherwise last night.
"I rang David Cameron to congratulate him," he told a press conference gathered for his speech.
Mr Miliband said he accepted full responsibility for his party's performance, before personally apologising to all his "colleagues who lost seats", whom he named, and all other party MPs and candidates.
"I am tendering my resignation that will take effect this afternoon as this party needs open and honest debate about the right way forward without any constraint," he said.
He also endorsed his deputy leader Harriet Harman.
He told the press conference he was looking forward to "reacquainting" himself with his wife Justine and their two sons Daniel and Sam.
He also made a joke about 'Milifandom', a social media trend set up by teenage girls supporting Ed Miliband and the Labour party.
Finishing up, he told the conference the party would come back again.
Miliband's resignation came less than 14 hours after an exit poll showed the Conservatives had a commanding lead over Labour, the Lib Dems were annihilated and UKIP made no impact on the Conservative vote.
Overnight, this poll turned into a reality, despite commentators for Labour and Lib Dems questioning the accuracy of the BBC/ITN/Sky Exit poll when it came out at 10pm last night.
The Conservatives, under the leadership of Prime Minister David Cameron, swept back into Downing Street with a surprise yet comprehensive victory.
The Tories are now expecting to command a majority government, and are not expected to the need the support of a smaller party in government.
The Conservatives were in coalition with the Liberal Democrats during their last term.
The Lib Dems were annihilated in the elections dropping to eight seats from 58 - although counting is still continuing.
Uki[p's NIgel Farage was the first leader to step down earlier today.
Famously, he said he would resign "within ten minutes" if he failed to land a seat in Westminster.
It took him slightly longer - but he did it within an hour of Thanet-South announcing that the Conservative candidate Craig McKinlay had beaten Farage into second place.
Announcing his resignation, he said: "I'm a man of my word, I shall be writing to the Ukip national executive in a few minutes, saying I am standing down as leader of Ukip.
"I shall recommend that ... they put in place as acting leader Suzanne Evans who I think has emerged from this campaign as an absolute tower of strength within Ukip."
He added: "Personally, there's a bit of me that is disappointed but there is a bit of me that feels better than I have felt for many, many years.
"It really has been seven days a week, totally unrelenting, and occasionally let down by people who perhaps haven't said and done the right things.
"I haven't had a fortnight's holiday since October 1993. I intend to take the summer off, enjoy myself a bit.
"There will be a leadership election for the next leader of Ukip in September and I will consider over the course of this summer whether to put my name forward to do that job again."
Outgoing Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg was next up as he resigned as leader of the Liberal Democrats following a disastrous night for his party.
"It is simply been heartbreaking to see so many friends and colleagues who have served their constituents so diligently, over so many years, abruptly lose their seats because of forces entirely beyond their control."