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May's Key Advisers Resign After Tories Lost Parliamentary Majority

May's Key Advisers Resign After Tories Lost Parliamentary Majority

Voters stripped the ruling Conservative Party of its majority in Parliament. Senior figures in the party have called the issue a "red line" for power sharing talks at Stormont.

Prime Minister Theresa May, the head of the Conservative Party, will get the first shot at putting together a government.

"Everybody is positioning themselves", said Anand Menon, professor of European politics and foreign affairs at Kings College London. I reached him via Skype.

He said: "I am backing Theresa May". That would give May and the Conservatives a working majority.

May, who campaigned under the mantra "strong and stable", announced Friday that she would retain five key Cabinet ministers in their posts.

Following the election result, she told Radio Ulster: "It's too soon to say what we're going to do yet". And the goal of its campaign seemed to be not to get close even to winning the election but simply to avoid some sort of complete wipeout.

She added: "The mandate given to us by the people will be used responsibly".

In Thursday's election the Conservatives won 318 of the 650 House of Commons seats, 12 fewer than the party had before the snap election, and eight short of the 326 needed for an outright majority.

Nigel Evans was among several Conservative MPs to call for Timothy's resignation, and said "anyone with their fingers" on the document should resign. From Labour? And is she likely to?

But her decision to call the general election has backfired, and it is not even certain she will remain at the helm. It was three years before the next scheduled election, and the conservatives already had a secure, if small, majority.

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But there was a degree of truth in her assertion that the Government negotiating Brexit needed to be "strong and stable". She said: "Nobody will condemn the first minister (Sturgeon) if she now decides to re-set her course".

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"What the country needs more than ever is certainty", she said.

May's only hope of forming a government is to win support from Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which won 10 seats.

Neither party is able to form a government.

Northern Ireland remains the only part of the United Kingdom where women can not access abortion unless their life is endangered by pregnancy - a legal situation that is incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights, according to a Belfast High Court ruling in 2015. Johnson - a former Tory leadership contender - denied he was planning a leadership challenge. Despite the fact the Conservatives are seeking the support of the DUP it seems that no official coalition will be agreed and it will simply be on a "support basis".

If May can get through this vote with the help of the DUP she can continue in government.

MARTIN: Well, so clearly there's a lot to talk about.

Most of the MPs elected last week want to avoid a so-called "hard Brexit", pro-EU politicians claim. So what happens now? That projection may need to be revised: The EU's interest lies in making the Brexit so painful that other countries will not follow Great Britain's course, and a weak government in London could be forced to accept unfavorable terms.

Many believe the results of the 2017 general elections will also impact Britain's exit from the 27-nation bloc, as the main reason behind calling for sudden elections was to strengthen May's hands in parliament to negotiate with Brussels and pass necessary legislation.

MARTIN: That's Roger Scully.

SCULLY: Thanks very much, Michel.

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