Brexit Party tops city Euro election poll - The Worcester Observer

Brexit Party tops city Euro election poll

Worcester Editorial 26th May, 2019 Updated: 27th May, 2019   0

WORCESTER voters delivered a resounding snub to the Conservatives and Labour as the Brexit Party topped the poll in the city’s European Parliament election results.

Labour and the Tories were beaten into fourth and fifth in the results revealed as polls closed across the continent.

The Brexit Party emerged on top with 8,364 votes, comfortably ahead of the Liberal Democrats on 5,018 and the Green Party on 4,393.

Labour polled 3,109 while the Conservatives mustered 2,478 as voters in the city appeared to mirror the national trend in rejecting the two main parties in favour of pro-Brexit or pro-remain parties.

UKIP finished with 1,172 votes while the newly-established Change UK were bottom of the pile with 973 votes.

The results are in stark contrast to the last Euro elections in the city in 2014 which saw UKIP top the poll with 7,715 votes with the Conservatives in second on 7,185 and Labour third on 6,651.

Voters across the West Midlands backed Nigel Farage’s newly-established Brexit Party in the European Parliament elections.

The former UKIP leader saw his new party equal the three seats won by UKIP at the last elections in 2014 as 37.7 per cent of voters across the region backed a party which was only founded in January while Labour and the Conservatives lost almost 10 per cent and 14 per cent of their vote share respectively.

Unlike the ‘First Past the Post’ system used in UK elections, the EU vote was held under proportional representation meaning the number of votes each party gets overall determines how many MEPs they have.

As a result, the Brexit Party won three of the seven West Midlands seats on offer with Rupert Lowe, a former chairman of Southampton FC, Martin Daubney, former editor of lads’ magazine Loaded, and Andrew Kerr all elected.

UKIP saw its vote collapse by a staggering 26.5 per cent to just five per cent meaning the party was left with no MEPs.

Pro EU parties, the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party saw their share of the vote surge as Labour and the Conservatives suffered at the ballot box.

Labour’s Neena Gill retained her seat despite the party seeing its share of the vote drop by 9.8 per cent to 17 per cent, 0.7 per cent ahead of the Liberal Democrats in third who saw their vote rise by almost 11 per cent.

The result saw Sion Simon lose his seat for Labour but a return to the European Parliament for the Liberal Democrats Phil Bennion who lost his seat five years ago.

Dr Ellie Chowns gained a seat for the Green Party who finished fourth as 5.4 per cent increase in the vote saw the party poll more than 10 per cent.

Voters across the West Midlands deserted the Conservatives who saw their share of the vote plummet by 14.3 per cent to just 10 per cent and fifth place in the poll.

The result also saw Dan Dalton lose his seat with long-serving MEP Anthea McIntyre the sole Conservative West Midlands voice returned to Brussels.

Newly-formed Change UK won just 3.4 per cent of the vote to finish bottom of the pile among West Midlands voters.

The West Midlands turnout was 31.1 per cent this year, down from 32.4 per cent in 2014.

Analysis  – Observer editor, Rob George

Three weeks after the Brexit whirlwind gave local Conservatives a real fright in the local council elections, the storm returned to send a message across the Faithful City.

The Brexit Party is sweeping the board across the UK, hovering up annoyed Leave voters with their message of betrayal and taking votes from the two main parties. Will the Conservatives and Labour ever be able to win them back?

Yet such is the muddled state of British politics at the moment, if you add the Liberal Democrat and Green vote together it suggests more people in the city want a second referendum or even revoke Article 50!

What’s the truth? The city and I suspect the nation as a whole is more divided than ever, the chasm which opened in 2016 is now a yawning canyon.

Alienation will be the only winner because whether Brexit is delivered or ditched, a large section of British people will never forgive the powers that be.


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