European elections are run over multiple days - the earliest voting countries in the EU are voting today, and the final votes will be on Sunday.

Is it permissible for an exit-poll for a single country (e.g. the UK) to be published before the remaining countries have voted?

I'm especially interested in UK and EU law regarding this.

  • By comparison, I believe that in the US, which spans time zones from UTC-4 to UTC+10, has no such rules and will happily broadcast Eastern results when Hawaii and Alaska are still voting (probably few people care about results in UTC-4 and nearly nobody about results in UTC+10)
    – gerrit
    Commented May 24, 2019 at 11:35

2 Answers 2


I believe it's illegal. The following is an extract from the relevant BBC editorial guidelines.

No opinion poll on any issue relating to the election may be published until after the polls have closed throughout the European Union (ie Sunday 26 May).

Whilst the polls are open throughout Europe, it is a criminal offence to broadcast anything about the way in which people have voted in that election or to forecast the election result, which includes how a particular party or candidate may have fared, based on how people have voted.


No, they may not. Which doesn't mean it doesn't happen though; it seems the Netherlands doesn't have a stellar reputation in that aspect: https://www.politico.eu/article/commission-prohibits-early-publishing-of-election-results/

AFAIK, a country may (and have done so in the past) publish turnout figures.

  • Netherlands also publishes European Netherlands results when Caribbean Netherlands are still voting.
    – gerrit
    Commented May 24, 2019 at 11:36

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .