December 20, 2014
Eurosceptic UKIP party breaks British bipartisanship
The victory of Britain’s eurosceptic UKIP party in European elections broke the traditional British bipartisanship for the first time in over a century.
UKIP party swept to victory in EU elections riding a tide of Euroscepticism and anxiety about immigration to beat Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives and the opposition Labour party.
With 64 out of 73 seats declared, the UK Independence Party, which wants to pull Britain out of the European Union, had won 23 seats, ahead of the Conservatives and Labour on 18 seats each. The Liberal Democrats had won just one seat, putting it in fifth place behind the Green party on three seats.
It is the first time such an election is not won by either the Conservatives or Labour since 1910.
UKIP leader Nigel Farage hailed the win as a watershed that would pile pressure on the leaders of Britain's three main political parties to adopt more Eurosceptic policies.
"The people's army of UKIP have spoken tonight [for last night] and delivered just about the most extraordinary result that has been seen in British politics for 100 years," Farage said in the port city of Southampton after his re-election to the European Parliament.
Farage said that UKIP would now target seats in Britain's national parliament in Westminster and that the 20-year-old party could hold the balance of power if, as polls suggest, neither the Conservatives nor Labour wins outright next May.
"We will go on next year to a general election with a targeting strategy and I promise you this: You haven't heard the last of us," Farage said as his supporters quaffed champagne around him.