Page 1 of 1

What do the results of the 2019 European Parliament election in the UK indicate?

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 9:27 am
by Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Yesterday, the results of the 2019 European Parliament election in the UK were announced, showing significant gains for the Brexit Party and the Liberal Democrats, along with significant losses for the Labour Party and even greater losses for the Conservative Party. A lot of remainers are saying that these results show that there is a "remain surge", however, many leavers claim the opposite, stating that the results show that there is justification to leave the EU without a deal.

Let's start with the claim of the "remain surge". By the very standards set by the pro-remain Liberal Democrats, this is not the case. A Lib Dem campaign leaflet stated the following:
Your choice on 23rd May:
Vote for Brexit; Conservative, Labour, UKIP or Brexit Party; All of these parties are backing Brexit. A vote for them in this election is a vote to take Britain out of Europe.
OR
Vote to stop Brexit; Liberal Democrats; If you want to stop Brexit, use your vote in this election to back the biggest party in Britain fighting on your side.
By stating that a vote for the Conservatives or Labour is a vote for Brexit, the Lib Dems have inadvertently admitted that the majority of the country has once again voted for Brexit. When the vote of the pro-Brexit parties (Labour, Conservatives, Brexit Party, UKIP, TUV, DUP, UUP) is combined, it tallies up to 57.75% compared with the 41.02% of the pro-remain parties (Lib Dem, Green, SNP, Tinge, Plaid, SF, Alliance, SDLP). So the remain vote has gone down from 48% to 41%. Hardly a "remain surge".

So that should look pretty good for the Brexiteers, right? Well, not for those who want to leave the EU without a deal. The combined tally of the parties that favour a no-deal Brexit (Brexit Party, UKIP, TUV) is 34.2%, compared to the 64.57% of the parties that oppose it. This is contrary to the idea that when the British people voted to Brexit, they voted to leave the EU without a deal, and that any form of soft Brexit would be a betrayal of the will of the people™.

In conclusion, both the hard remainers and hard Brexiteers are using the results of the election to claim that the majority of the British people agree with them, when the actual results show that the country is very divided (which we all knew already).

Re: What do the results of the 2019 European Parliament election in the UK indicate?

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 9:49 am
by miniboes
In practice, it means very little. MEPs can do very little to bring about or prevent brexit. Only 37% of the UK electorate showed up for the election, and it's hard to tell whether or not there is bias in turnout one way or the other.

It's very significant, however, that Corbyn finally supports a second referendum.

More importantly than what happens to brexit, this election may very well turn out to be a turning point for european politics. Seats are more evenly spread between the liberals, greens, social-democrats, nationalists and christian-democrats than they ever were. That may do a lot to make the EP more dynamic, less technocratic in the eyes of the public, and more politically engaging.

Much depends on who will become the president of the european comission. I hope it will be a progressive like Frans Timmermans, Margrethe Vestager or Bas Eickhout rather than Manfredd Weber. Much like the US, institutional reform and climate action should be at the top of the EU's agenda.

Re: What do the results of the 2019 European Parliament election in the UK indicate?

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 10:28 am
by Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
miniboes wrote:
Tue May 28, 2019 9:49 am
It's very significant, however, that Corbyn finally supports a second referendum.
It will probably be the case at the time of the next election that Labour will be the party of having a second referendum and the Conservatives will be the party of no deal Brexit.