Hove and Portslade elects city’s first openly gay MP

Besi Besemar May 8, 2015

Following a night of shocks up and down the country, the Conservative Party look set to form a majority government as the pre-election opinion polls got the outcome of the election all wrong.

The count took place at the Brighton Centre
The count took place at the Brighton Centre

MANY senior politicians and household names lost their seats including former Lib Dem Leader Charles Kennedy, Leader of Labour in Scotland Jim Murphy, Lib Dem Business Secretary, Vince Cable, George Galloway from Respect, Conservative Minister, Ester McVey, Lib Dem Chief Secretary to the Secretary Danny Alexander and maybe the biggest scalp of the night, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor, Ed Balls.

Nigel Farage MEP failed in his bid to take Thanet South and has since¬†stood down as leader of UKIP recommending that UKIP’S deputy leader Suzanne Evans stands in as temporary leader until the UKIP leadership election later in the year when “he will consider” if he puts his name forward in any new leadership contest. UKIP took 12.6% of the national vote but got only one seat.

Biggest losers on the night were the Liberal Democrats whose share of the national vote was decimated falling by 15.2% with many Lib Dem voters transferring their allegiances to the Conservative Party rather than Labour.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg managed to hold onto his Sheffield Hallam seat but has since resigned as leader of the Liberal Democrats following their poor showing.

The Scottish National Party were the biggest winners taking 56 seats on a 4.8% share of the national vote.

Locally, the country’s first Green Candidate, Caroline Lucas¬†retained her Brighton Pavilion seat increasing her majority from 1,252 to nearly 8,000.

Simon Kirby the popular Conservative candidate for Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven held the seat for the Conservatives with a majority of just 690 over Labour’s Nancy Platts while Peter Kyle bucked the national trend, taking Hove and Portslade for Labour and becoming the city’s first openly gay MP to be elected with a majority of 1,236 over former Hove Police Chief, Cllr Graham Cox.

Ruth Hunt
Ruth Hunt

Stonewall CEO Ruth Hunt, said: ‚ÄúWe‚Äôre encouraged that people took to the polls and voted. More than 25 openly lesbian, gay or bisexual MPs have been elected, making this the largest group of openly LGB MPs elected to date. Our Parliament is richer and stronger for the diversity of voices and experiences within it, however, it is certainly disappointing not to see any openly trans people represented amongst our MPs. Looking ahead, our MPs cannot forget the manifesto commitments they made to the LGBT community. We must see those words translated into tangible actions. The Conservatives, alongside the Liberal Democrats, have had an impressive track record at Westminster over the last five years, and we look forward to working closely with the new government towards achieving equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people, here and abroad.‚ÄĚ

Tellers await the arrival of ballot forms from Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven Polling Stations
Tellers await the arrival of ballot forms from Brighton Kemptown and Peacehaven Polling Stations

Hove and Portslade results:

Candidate                                 Party               Votes       %

Peter Kyle                                 Labour             22,082     42.22%

Graham Cox                            Conservative   20,846     39.86%

Christopher Hawtree          Green Party       3,659      7%

Kevin Smith                             UKIP                  3,265      6.24%

Peter Lambell                         Lib Dem             1,861       3.56%

Jenny Barnard Langston   Independent         322      0.62%

Dave Hill                                   TUSC                     144       0.28%

Dame Dixon                             Monster Party     125        0.24%

Brighton Pavilion results:

Candidate                                 Party               Votes       %

Caroline Lucas                       Green Party    22,871        41.82%

Purna Sen                                Labour            14,904         27.26%

Clarence Mitchell                 Conservative  12,448         22.77%

Nigel Carter                             UKIP                 2,724           4.98%

Chris Bowers                          Lib Dem            1,525            2.79%

Nick Yeomans                        Independent       116             0.21%

Howard Pilott                        Socialist Party     88            0.16%

Brighton Kemptown & Peacehaven results:

Candidate                                 Party               Votes       %

Simon Kirby                            Conservative  18,428        40.67%

Nancy Platts                            Labour             17,738         39.15%

Ian Buchanan                        UKIP                  4,446           9.81%

Davy Jones                              Green Party      3,187           7.03%

Paul Chandler                        Lib Dem            1,365           3.01%

Jacqueline Shodeke            Socialist Party       73           0.16%

Matthew Taylor                     Independent          69           0.15%