Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.

Summary

  1. Lib Dem peer claims David Cameron told Nick Clegg privately he doesn't think he'll win a majority
  2. Mr Cameron calls it "desperate tactics" by the Lib Dems, but Mr Clegg says it's "a big fib" for the Tories to claim they can win outright
  3. Labour and the Lib Dems focussed on the NHS while the Conservatives campaigned on tax
  4. Labour sources tell the BBC the party is considering the option of having a minority coalition with the Lib Dems
  5. Comedian Russell Brand endorses Ed Miliband
  6. Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood says she would vote down a Labour Budget if it contained cuts
  7. UKIP launches its Scottish manifesto in Falkirk

Live Reporting

By Angela Harrison, Jenny Matthews and Tom Moseley

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good night

Before we go - time for a brief look back at main stories of the day:

Labour and the Liberal Democrats have focused on the NHS in their campaigns , while the Conservatives concentrated on tax and the economy.

Senior Labour figures say they are considering the option of forming a minority coalition with the Lib Dems if there's a hung parliament.

In response, the Tories have warned that a vote for the Lib Dems would lead to an "SNP-led Ed Miliband government".

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon questioned the legitimacy of a government which did not include Scottish MPs.

A Lib Dem claimed David Cameron told Nick Clegg he didn't expect to win a clear majority - the Tories dismissed this as "nonsense".

UKIP launched its Scottish manifesto.

Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood says she would vote down a Labour Budget if it contained cuts.

Comedian Russell Brand endorsed Ed Miliband.

Labour on NHS offensive

Labour leader Ed Miliband will warn of a "financial bombshell" that means most English hospitals face having to cut staff, beds and services this year, when he campaigns on Tuesday.

As the election campaign enters the final 48 hours, Mr Miliband is expected to say a "cash crisis made in Downing Street" is putting severe strain on the NHS and will mean major budget cuts in the coming months.

Tuesday's Independent

Independent
Independent

Cameron on Russell Brand

The Prime Minister told BBC Local Radio:

What Russell Brand is saying is 'vote Labour and SNP' rather reinforcing my point that it would be a coalition of chaos with Ed Miliband held to ransom by the SNP on a vote-by-vote, measure-for-measure basis. Think about how that can affect the rest of the United Kingdom..So I think it's a very disturbing vision."

Politics and fashion

Fashion and feminist politicsneed not be mutually exclusive, writes Harper's Bazaar editor Justine Picardie in the New Statesman.

Sturgeon's shoes
Getty Images

Tuesday's i

i
i

'Suicide note'

A vote for UKIP is like writing a "suicide note" for eurosceptics' hopes of a referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union, Iain Duncan Smith has said.

The former Tory leader said backing UKIP would allow Labour to take power and deny the people a vote on the UK's relationship with Brussels

"I would simply appeal to them [voters] and say, honestly this is a risk that is no longer a protest, but it's like a suicide note," he told the Daily Telegraph .

Tuesday's Times

Times
Times

Tuesday's Guardian

The guardian
The guardian

Tuesday's Mirror

Mirror
Mirror

Nick Clegg's seat

A poll for the Guardian suggests Nick Clegg is on course to keep his seat in the Commons.

There's a suggestion too from pollsters ICM that this is partly due to Conservatives voting tactically to keep Labour out.

The Lib Dem leader has held the seat of Sheffield Hallam since 2005 but some polls had suggested he might lose it.

According to this survey, Mr Clegg is seven points ahead of his Labour rival Oliver Coppard - 42% compared with 35%.

Martin Boon of ICM said: "Some caution is needed because some of the sub-samples involved here are small but this looks like evidence of Tory tactical voting to save Nick Clegg - and on a breathtaking scale."

ICM conducted a phone poll of 501 adults between 1 and 3 May.

A full list of candidates standing in this seat can be found here .

Tuesday's Telegraph

Telegraph
Telegraph

Tuesday's Express

Express
Express

Tuesday's FT

FT
FT

Voters called Charlotte

Of 130 most common first names in Britain, 'Charlotte' is the number 1 most likely name to vote #Conservative. #GE2015 #CorrelationCausation

Bow group split

Some high-profile members of the Bow Group have distanced themselves from comments made by its chairman Benjamin Harris-Quinney calling on Conservative supporters to back UKIP in places where such a move is most likely to defeat Labour.

Michael Heseltine, Michael Howard, Norman Lamont and Nirj Deva MEP have put out a statement urging people to vote Conservative "in all situations".

Independent supports 'Lib-Con coalition'

In its latest editorial The Independent appears to back another Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition.

It warns against a break up of the UK, saying "only a legitimate government with a proper mandate and a commitment to the Union can prevent the fragmentation of our country".

It continues:

For all its faults, another Lib-Con Coalition would both prolong recovery and give our kingdom a better chance of continued existence. This title casts no vote. But we prize strong, effective government, consider nationalism guilty until proven innocent, and say that if the present Coalition is to get another chance, we hope it is much less conservative, and much more liberal."

'Defeatism'

NIck Robinson, Political Editor, BBC News

Theme of day = defeatism. @nick_clegg outraged @David_Cameron by alleging it. @edballs concedes that biggest party normally wins ...1/2

Nick Robinson goes on to say that UKIP leader Nigel Farage is calling for a change in the voting system, while only the SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon sounds confident.

Minority coalition

There's more here from BBC Deputy Political Editor James Landale on the news that senior Labour figures are considering the option of forming a minority coalition with the Liberal Democrats.

Farage on Bow Group

Nigel Farage has welcomed the news that the Bow Group is encouraging supporters to back his UKIP party in places where they are best-placed to win.

The group describes itself as the UK's oldest conservative think tank.

Mr Farage said:

Today's news goes to the heart of what is going on in British politics and reveals the truth that to keep Mr Miliband out of Number 10, people must vote UKIP.... UKIP MPs are critical to ensuring issues like an EU referendum, defence spending and stopping the SNP bully are high up the agenda in the next parliament."

The other #Edstone

There's been a lot of talk about #Edstone online, referring to Ed Miliband's giant stone engraved with six election promises.

But there's actually a place called Edstone - well, Great Edstone to be precise. It's a small village in North Yorkshire with around 200 people. What's life like there? Newsbeat found out.

Great Edstone tag
Andrew Doble (via Newsnight)

Tory group in tactical voting call

The Bow Group, which describes itself as the United Kingdom's oldest conservative think tank, has urged Conservative supporters to back UKIP in seats where it is best-placed to defeat Labour.

Chairman Benjamin Harris-Quinney told The Telegraph UKIP MPs would “balance the left-wing rhetoric of minor parties like the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Liberal Democrats in the House of Commons".

He said: “It is a strategic failing that no accommodation could be made with UKIP prior to the election, but in acknowledging there won’t be a Conservative majority we have to now be realistic that the best chances of forming a conservative government lie in alliances between parties of similar values like the Conservatives, UKIP and the DUP.”

UKIP and IS extremists fear

UKIP's Nigel Farage, on a walkabout in Kent, says the main concern for the people he's been speaking to is border controls and immigration.

The UKIP leader said people were "fearful" of the threat from extremists, who he has warned could enter the UK amidst the migrants crossing the Mediterranean from North Africa.

One man told him he was concerned about ISIS attacking his young daughter.

The UKIP leader later described the man as having a "somewhat excessive fear", but said "it's not for the media or for me as a candidate to tell someone they're wrong".

He added: "I'm not exaggerating the threat, that man did - I'm not, I'm saying there is a threat, I'm not trying to sell the message of fear - it's a message of hope."

Cameron: 'Going our way'

At a rally in Bath, David Cameron has insisted "all the arguments are going our way"

The prime minister told activists to press home his warning about the economic risk posed by a Labour government.

"Whether it is the choice on plan, the choice on teams, the choice on leaders, the choice on deficit, the choice on taxes, all the arguments are going our way," he said.

Opinion polls put the two main parties neck and neck, with neither on course to have a majority of seats in the House of Commons.

Mr Cameron told supporters:

We have got one big argument about the economy, about leadership, about security, that we guarantee, and about the massive risk there would be of an Ed Miliband government propped up by the SNP. We have built the foundations in the last five years; we are going to be the better life in the next five years. One big argument, three days to go, 23 seats to win, let's get out there and do it."

David Cameron at rally
Getty Images

Scottish Lib Dems

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie has accused the SNP of arrogance and of believing that they have won the election already. The Lib Dems hold 11 seats in Scotland.

He said:

They wrongly argue that SNP is for all Scotland and all of Scotland is SNP. In each of our 11 held seats, voters face a clear choice between the Liberal Democrats who offer stability, unity and decency, or the SNP whose MPs will spend all of their time seeking grievances and divisions to put forward a second referendum."

'Robust' political system

Political commentator

Whatever the result on Friday, we have one of the world's most robust political systems. It will cope.

'I will help you' - Javid

Earlier, Conservative Culture Secretary Sajid Javid apologised for David Cameron's no show at a rally staged by community organising charity Citizens UK.

Both Labour's Ed Miliband and Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg did attend.

Mr Javid said he was sorry the prime minister could not attend and said he was representing him at the gathering of more than 2,200 voters.

Pressed repeatedly to give a yes or no answer on whether a future Tory prime minister would attend meetings with the group in the run up to any election in 2020, Mr Javid replied: "I can't give you a yes or no answer.

"We will make sure that the right people, the right minister, which includes the prime minister, or any other kind of minister... I will help you in any way that I can."

Sajid Javid
Getty Images

Sturgeon: 'Big difference'

The next government must reflect the whole of the UK if it is to be considered legitimate and cannot "ignore" Scottish voices, SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has said.

Scotland's First Minister again said the SNP were ready to join forces with Labour to "lock the Tories out" of power and insisted the next government should not simply be made up of the party which has the most MPs in England.

In a speech in Dumfries, she said the SNP - who are tipped to win many seats north of the border - could make a "big difference" at Westminster. Ed Miliband has said he will not do any deal with the Scottish nationalists, even if that means forfeiting the chance to be the next prime minister because, he says, they want to break up the union.

Minority coalition

James Landale

Deputy political editor

Senior Labour figures are considering the option of forming a minority coalition with the Liberal Democrats to counter claims that a Labour government would lack legitimacy if it won fewer seats than the Conservatives, writes James Landale, the BBC's Deputy Political Editor.

Senior Labour sources say a coalition with the Lib Dems would give the government collectively more seats than the Conservatives and that might give an Ed Miliband-led adminstration greater legitimacy in the eyes of voters.

Labour could form the next government even if it has fewer MPs than the Tories and both parties have no majority. What matters constitutionally is not which party comes first or second but which can command the confidence of the House of Commons with the support of other parties.

Some Tory ministers have begun to argue that it would be illegitimate for Labour to form a government if it "came second" behind the Conservatives - in an attempt to shape the agenda for the day after the election if no party wins outright, the Tories win most seats and David Cameron tries to stay on in Downing Street.

But Labour sources say that a coalition with the Lib Dems would not only give an Ed Miliband minority government greater legitimacy, it would also give it greater stability. They say that while coalition would not give Labour a majority in the House of Commons, it would give the government the ability to out-vote the Conservatives regularly whenever the SNP abstain.

House of Commons
BBC

Wood on the look out for Lib Dem voters

Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood has sought to influence disillusioned Liberal Democrat voters by urging them to place their trust in her party instead.

During a speech in the marginal Lib Dem-held constituency of Ceredigion, she criticised Nick Clegg's party and talked up Plaid's commitment to tackling social justice.

Addressing an audience at Aberystwyth University, she insisted the Welsh nationalists' vision had chimed with many Lib Dem supporters.

She said: "I know that many placed their faith in parties that did not keep their promises.

"People are still, rightfully, angry by the events of five years ago.

"There will be in all likelihood a hung parliament again this week. And to those who were disappointed by the outcome five years ago, I ask you not to despair but to consider which party, which candidate you can trust to do right for your community, for Wales and on the issues that matter to you."

You can find a full list of all the candidates standing in Ceredigion here.

Leanne Wood
BBC

Sturgeon on protest

The Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon says any abusive behaviour on the campaign trail is unacceptable.

She was asked about a protest and scuffle in Glasgow at a speech by Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy.

Nicola Sturgeon told the BBC:

I take a very strong view that anybody in an election is allowed to campaign without being abused and these people weren't acting on behalf of the SNP. This is a fantastic election campaign and we should all be out there putting forward positive messages and engaging positively with the people of Scotland."

Demo in Glasgow
BBC video grab

Time for PR?

Is it the end of the line for the "first past the post" system?

Writing in the New Statesman, Katie Ghose says it's time to switch to a system of Proportional Representation.

page with parties on
BBC

Labour leader Ed Miliband is speaking at a rally in London's Methodist Central Hall staged by community organising charity Citizens UK. Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg has also spoken, while the Conservatives were represented by Culture Secretary Sajid Javid.

Miliband's screams of appreciation

Screams of appreciation fill the Methodist Central Hall in Westminster as the Labour leader Ed Miliband addresses the Citizens UK audience.

He says: "I come here today to affirm your values and celebrate your cause....

"They [Ed Miliband's parents] taught me that when you see an injustice you shouldn't just get angry you should do something about it.

"Good people can overcome injustice.

"Lets put working people first lets change the country together."

Your views

email to politics@bbc.co.uk

Clegg's decency

Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg adds: "I don't think there is anything remotely decent about George Osborne's plan to take up to £1,500 off eight million of the most vulnerable children... if he was decent he would look the families and the mothers and the fathers and the children... in the eye and come clean with them about his plans to make their life harder rather than easier."