Labour advances, sends Richard Corbett back to European Parliament

Tonight saw the Labour Party bolster its influence in the European Parliament, winning new seats in many of the UK’s regions, including Yorkshire and the Humber — which re-elected Richard Corbett.

UKIP managed little more than to add to the previous BNP votes to their 2009 results along with support from disgruntled Conservatives (UKIP + BNP in 2009 = 25%, + 5% disgruntled Tories = 30%).

On UKIP’s performance, Richard Corbett MEP commented:

“Despite the media hype on the ‘earthquake’ in the political landscape, UKIP have made little gain in the combined BNP and UKIP vote from 2009. In attracting discontented Conservatives, voters have punished David Cameron’s party for indecision on the future of the UK in the EU — resulting in an altogether disastrous night for the coalition parties.

“A large number of citizens in Yorkshire and Humber voted for a pro-European party, Labour. They showed continued and substantial support for Labour’s sensible position of staying in the European Union, to constructively change, improve and reform it, to safeguard UK jobs and prosperity.”

In gaining a sizeable number of new seats in the next European Parliament, Labour will now make up one of the largest parties in the crucial European Socialist and Democratic grouping. This means Labour will be able to play a crucial role in shaping, amending, approving or rejecting EU legislation and ensuring that the rules for the common market, when they are needed, protect consumers, workers and the environment.

On his re-election, Richard Corbett MEP added:

“On a personal level, I am delighted to have been re-elected to represent Yorkshire and Humber alongside Linda McAvan MEP, and I would like to thank all those who voted, supported and campaigned for us both.”

Notes to the editor

  1. Richard Corbett was a Labour MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber prior to losing his seat in 2009. From January 2010 until February 2014, he was an advisor to the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy. In this capacity, and as a frequent writer and commentator on European affairs, he was voted by a panel of journalists, academics, retired diplomats, and think-tankers in November 2012, as the fourth most influential Briton on EU policy, ahead of the Prime Minister, the Chancellor and Commission Vice President Baroness Ashton.
  2. For more information on Richard Corbett MEP, visit his website:


Richard Corbett / +44 7711 007 329 /

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  1. “he was voted by a panel of journalists, academics, retired diplomats, and think-tankers in November 2012, as the fourth most influential Briton on EU policy”

    Mr Corbett, you’re a labour politician, aren’t you supposed to be popular with the working class people that have abandoned labour for UKIP, not with think tanks and diplomats.

    “The weakening of trade unions and local government has purged working-class voices from a party founded as the political wing of organised labour: just 4% of all MPs come from a manual background. Special advisers are parachuted into constituencies they have never heard of. If they know the price of milk, it’s only because they’ve Googled it. Policies are decided by focus groups; a language is spoken that is alien to the average punter, full of buzzwords and jargon such as “predistribution” and “hard-working people better off”. So colourless, so dreary is this political elite, that Farage – a privately educated ex-City commodities trader who wants to cut taxes on the rich – ends up looking like an ordinary bloke down the pub, simply because he speaks like a vague approximation of a human being.”