Despite exit polls that projected a tight vote, the results of Thursday’s British general election reflected anything but, as Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative Party secured an outright majority in Parliament, winning 331 seats, up 24 from the 2010 election. This comes as a striking blow to opposition party leader, Ed Miliband, the son of Polish Holocaust survivors, who had hopes of becoming the first Jewish Labour Party leader elected as Prime Minister. (In 1868, Benjamin Disraeli, a Conservative, became the UK’s first and only Jewish Prime Minister–although some would say Disraeli doesn’t count, because he was officially baptized into Christianity as a child.)
Today, Miliband—who defeated his own brother to become head of the Labour Party in 2010—resigned as party leader. In a statement, Miliband reflected on the loss, and took “absolute and total responsibility for the result and our defeat at this election.”
Jonathan Zalman is a writer and teacher based in Brooklyn.