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Last Updated: Saturday, 7 May 2005, 15:43 GMT 16:43 UK
Wales voters' panel: Ben Hill on the result
MEET THE PANEL
Ben Hill
Name: Ben Hill
Age: 20
Lives: Cardiff
Works: Business student
Original voting intention: Liberal Democrat
Final voting intention: Liberal Democrat
In 10 words or less:
"Caring, passionate, cynical, practical, technophile, witty, resourceful"
Well, most people expected it, but fewer wanted it.

Yes, a historic victory for Tony Blair and his Labour administration but losses all throughout the UK mar that victory.

Things will be harder for Labour over the next few years with any possibility of a rebellion looking to cause upset and division in Westminster.

This can never be a bad thing as it stimulates debate and compromise on the important issues.

I feel a lot of people will still be baying for Mr Blair's blood, though and, just because he has the election, it doesn't mean his opponents are going to give up easily.

I would welcome him stepping down as prime minister sooner rather than later, and making way for another candidate.

BEN'S EARLIER THOUGHTS

Obviously that person is likely to be Gordon Brown, and we shall have to see whether that is better or worse for us.

I wonder whether most people who voted Labour voted with this in mind - I would hate to think that all 36% that voted that way specifically voted for a warmonger.

Locally, I am quite disappointed to see Plaid Cymru lost a seat rather than gained, but am heartened to see Cardiff Central becoming a Lib Dem seat.

I think that the biggest surprise for everyone was Blaenau Gwent and its "bloody nose" effect.

We shall have to see, however, whether this has a real change on the make-up of Welsh politics.

In essence though, this result was nearly the best that I could have realistically hoped for.

Obviously I would have liked the Liberal Democrats to have made more of a gain but, as long as they don't take fairy steps forward and giant leaps backwards, they will eventually become that "real alternative" they were looking for.





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