Clegg blamed as referendum on voting system backs status quo / Liberal Democrats left reeling after huge losses in local elections
View from the count
The British love their traditions. That is why the No2AV campaign has used the argument that it is defending a voting system that has served us, so David Cameron claims, for "centuries". But the reality is that our voting system is not a timeless ritual sanctified by antiquity but something that has evolved. Here are some key dates:
Business Secretary defies PM and urges voters to back AV – as a former MP labels status quo a 'moonlighter's charter'
Baroness Warsi, the Conservative Party chairman, was accused of scoring a spectacular own goal last night in a speech about the British National Party, provoking calls from some Tory MPs for David Cameron to move her in a summer reshuffle.
Campaigning for the historic referendum on voting reform burst into life yesterday as Ed Miliband joined Liberal Democrats and Greens in a cross-party push for a Yes vote.
The referendum on AV has, unsurprisingly, generated very limited enthusiasm. People know they are being used as part of a fix between politicians unwilling to trust voters and let them have a free choice between proportional representation as well as AV and the status quo. Fixes happen in Parliament, but they have no place in the referendum.
Labour whips have held talks with Charles Kennedy, the former Liberal Democrat leader, to try to persuade him to defect, opposition sources said last night.
The parliamentary Liberal Democrats were locked in talks for much of last night over whether they should join a coalition government with the Conservatives or Labour and a so-called "rainbow coalition" of smaller parties. Discussions began at 10pm and ended just after midnight, with further talks planned for today.
Nick Clegg will be forced to face the growing concerns within his party over co-operating with a Tory government amid unease that the Liberal Democrats may fail to secure any major concessions on changing Britain's voting system.
Leading Conservatives react with horror to a day of shuttle diplomacy between Lib Dem leader and David Cameron as thousands demonstrate in favour of PR, joining voices calling for the creation of 'traffic light' coalition of the left
The Liberal Democrat leader finds himself at the centre of a power struggle for No 10 – but there are serious doubts over whether he could carry his party into an alliance with the Tories
Even if Labour gets fewer votes, it can still beat the Tories. John Rentoul weighs up the possible alternatives and finds they all have their good points – and bad
The Former leader of the Liberal Democrats answers your questions, such as 'Should we abolish appointed Lords?' and 'When are you planning to retire?'
Gordon Brown is braced for a Labour rebellion today against moves to scrap the first-past-the-post voting system.
The MP for Meriden and shadow Communities and Local Government Secretary answers your questions, such as 'Aren't you just a one-man band?' and 'Would you do deals with the Lib Dems?'