Polls open in UK election after campaign marred by attacks

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It is an election that was called unexpectedly and that has unfolded unexpectedly. "But it´s still hard to form a coalition with Labour + others here, given their total only reaches the same number more or less than that of the Conservatives". It isn't just the two parties fighting it out though, as United Kingdom media were caught having a scuffle at a polling station this morning.

In polls leading up to the campaign's final day, May's lead over Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn was seen shrinking to 6 percentage points.

In the central English city of Leicester, a man in his fifties named Robert said he had never voted but felt compelled to this time.

The exit poll predicts the Tories will be 12 seats short of a parliamentary majority.

Voter Rachel Sheard, who cast her ballot at a polling station in Borough High Street, says that while the European Union was supposed to be at center stage, "I don't think that's in the hearts and minds of Londoners at the minute, (not) almost as much as the security is". And for months, she has been insisting that she would opt for a "hard Brexit", severing all ties with the European Union and then negotiating a free-trade agreement. She also said she would walk away from the talks rather than accept a bad deal. Home Secretary Amber Rudd hoped to fend off a Labour challenge in Hastings and Rye where she had a 4,800 majority.

"What this suggests is that there will be some instability and it will be harder for the United Kingdom government to negotiate a consistent position on Brexit", said Tony Travers, director of the LSE's Institute of Public Affairs.

A final message of thanks from Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

"This really will unnerve businesses and it's likely to spook markets considerably".

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The poll found that 36% were first time voters, that half of 18-24s went to the polls with a friend or family member and that Brexit was the main deciding factor driving those to vote. May at even more of a disadvantage.

The forecast Conservative victory is far smaller than suggested by opinion polls when May called the snap election during which her popularity was running high. She championed "strong and stable government".

However, the election campaign quickly turned against Ms. May. May, 60, fumbled the announcement of a key social-policy measure for older people, upsetting seniors and forcing her to make a hasty backtrack.

British voters went to the polls Thursday for an election envisioned to be dominated by the country's pending departure from the European Union but that ended up focusing on global terrorism following attacks in London and Manchester. Mr. Corbyn pounced on the police cuts and many rank and file officers complained about the lack of resources just as the country faced its biggest terrorist threat since the Irish Republican Army in the 1970s. He called for increased spending on the National Health Service, schools and police, as well as the nationalization of railroads and water utilities. At 10pm the broadcasters will announce the details of their exit poll. May will be able to fend off critics from within her own party, given the disastrous campaign and her weak performance. I think in a couple of elections before that they overestimated our vote. Politicians across all parties need to do more to engage the young voters of the future, because ensuring that their voices are heard and that their needs are central to manifestos is vital for a fair and progressive society. It projected 34 for the Scottish National Party and 14 for the Liberal Democrats.

Nicola Sturgeon's SNP is set for a downturn in fortunes, according to the exit poll, losing 22 seats to stand at 34.

Brexit led to Cameron's resignation a year ago and May's selection by the Tories as their leader.

However, the largest party does not have a privileged position.

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