But UKIP don’t cut through and it’s a bad night for the Liberal Democrats
Labour doubled their number of MEPs in London as the Liberal Democrats were wiped out in the capital.
Four Labour candidates were returned with 37% of the London electorate, beating the Conservatives into second place by a massive 310,000 votes.
It meant they lost one of their three MEPs, while UKIP, didn’t repeat their national dominance in the capital, retaining their single seat, along with the Greens.
“It’s our best result in London in the European elections since the PR system began,” said Labour’s re-elected lead MEP, Claude Moraes
“Labour is generally a pro-European party but sees London’s future as an internationally outward-looking city, at ease with itself and at ease with the kind of issues the UKIP’s scaring everyone about but also bread and butter issues that we were not afraid to talk about on doorstep, like the cost of living.”
Re-elected UKIP MEP Gerard Batten put a positive spin on a disappointing result for his party, which didn’t get the cut through in the capital it did nationally, where it topped the popular vote.
“In London my only regret is that we did not get our second candidate elected, but we did double our share of the vote and in a number of boroughs I believe we came second or third at the very least,” he said.
After 15 years in the parliament, Lib Dem MEP Baroness Sarah Ludford refused to join the growing chorus of discontent aimed at her party leader Nick Clegg after a disastrous night for the junior coalition partner.
“I am certainly not blaming anybody, I am not going around asking for anybody’s head,” she said.
“I think it’s a great shame that Europe’s premiere city does not have an MEP now from the pro-European party the Liberal Democrats.”
“I am proud of the campaign we fought, I am proud of Nick Clegg taking on Nigel Farage and his divisive fear-mongering, whipping up prejudiced attitudes, I am proud that we have fought a pro-European campaign.”
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