Euro Elections, the Candidates and the Parties for the South West

The European Elections will be soon upon us with the Polling day set for the 22nd May. This election comes around every five years and the last one coincided with the first Unitary Elections for Cornwall Council. The UK gets to elect 73 MEP’s out of a total of 751 a slight reduction of 15 MEP’s since the last election. These 751 MEP are drawn from the 28 Member States, and will represent a staggering 500 million people.

Last time round, the South West elected six MEP’s. These were: Giles Chichester (Conservative), Ashley Fox (Conservative), Julie Girling (Conservative), Trevor Colman (UKIP), William, Earl of Dartmouth  UKIP) and Graham Watson (Lib Dem). The turnout for the South West was 1,549,708 from an electorate of 3,998,479. A 38% turnout. Which is remarkably low considering the influence the European Parliament has.

So who is standing and who are they standing for? Well you are in luck, as like all Elections in the UK, a Statement or Parties and Individual Candidates has been produced.

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The South West Region comprises  Bristol, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire. It also includes the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar and is one of the nine UK Regions for the European Elections. Unlike National and Local Elections, which are carried out via the ‘first past the post’ method, the Euro elections are carried out (in the UK) by the D’hondt method.  If you want to know more, click on the previous link, but for those don’t want to, this method is proportional representation via a party list.

So who will take the honours for the South West?  The polls can all predict who might win, but that is up to those voting, and therefore why it is important to excercise your vote.  For the eagle eyed only two Candidates are from Cornwall and one of them is my friend and former Cornwall Councillor colleague, Jude Robinson. Good Luck Jude, though it is a shame you are so far down the party list. It is interesting to note too, the Olympic rower James Cracknell is standing for the Cons.

In fact out of the 48 Candidates, 11 of them have their registered address outside of the South West. Though to be fair, one lives in Gibraltar which is totally understandable considering Gib is part of the South West Region.

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