Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Friday, March 01, 2013

Anomaly or precursor?

It was only a by-election. It was a Lib Dem seat. Turnout was very low. But the Tories came in third? A sign of the times or the future?

Eastleigh by-election: Lib Dems hold on despite UKIP surge
Eastleigh in Hampshire
The Liberal Democrats have won the Eastleigh by-election, with the UK Independence Party pushing the Conservatives into third place…

But the party (Lib Dems), which has held Eastleigh since another by-election in 1994, won despite a fall in its share of the vote of more than 14 percentage points since the 2010 general election…

UKIP's Nigel Farage said the surge in support for his party was not a "freak result" but a continuation of a trend which had seen it rise in the national polls.

"We have really connected with voters in this constituency," he told the BBC. "And that is because we are talking about issues that the other parties would like to brush under the carpet."…

Turnout was 52.7%, down from 69.3% at the 2010 general election.

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