Mark Reckless: “We can win across the country”
Ukip win Rochester and Strood by-election by vast majority. Mark Reckless, the second Conservative defector confirmed a second seat in the House of Commons for the anti-Europe party
20 November saw Ukip win the Rochester and Strood by election by a majority vote as 16,867 constituency voters opted yes for the purple and yellow party. Conservative representative Kelly Tolhurt finished second polling 13,947 votes, while Labour finished third with 6,713 votes dropping percentage points by almost half having held the predecessor constituency in 2010. The Greens finished fourth ahead of the Liberal Democrats who received just 349 votes.
Despite Ukip’s popularity, Labour stole the headlines but for the right reasons does bring forward the question. Shadow attorney general Emily Thornberry was criticised over her ‘snobby’ tweet ahead of the elections.
Thornberry later resigned from Labour’s front bench the day following the tweet after apologising for the message. Ukip said Thornberry “sneered, and looked down her nose at a white van in Strood with the cross of St George on it”.
This Tuesday, two days prior to the by election, Reckless stated that if voted in, two more conservative party members may join the party. Michael Gove, Conservative Chief Whip prompted he was “100 per cent certain” that no other Tory MPs would defect to Ukp.
Published on Odd checker’s website, the latest odd’s on Conservative defectors express the leading names in switching parties ahead of the next general election. One of the named MPs, Peter Bone this morning confirmed to The Telegraph he will not be leaving the party.
Despite a second defecting blow to the conservative party, leader and Prime Minister David Cameron has announced plans to win back Rochester in the next general election.
“The result was closer than the pollsters had predicted. I am absolutely determined to win this seat back at the next general election because anything other than a Conservative government will put our recovery at risk and Ed Miliband in Downing Street. I am more determined than ever to deliver security for Britain” said Mr Cameron.
Shortly after being sworn in the House of Commons, Mr Reckless was met by Labour MP Dennis Skinner. In a debate discussing matters of the NHS, the veteran MP took the chance to voice his lack of regard for Reckless’ comments stated earlier in the week suggesting that long-term European immigrants to the UK could be forced to leave the country if Ukip win the next general election. The comments of the 82 year old were followed by loud cheers from the bench.
Pictures: Mark Reckless