By-election a blow for Cameron's party

2013-03-01 14:27
Prime Minister David Cameron (Picture: AFP)

Prime Minister David Cameron (Picture: AFP)

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London - A by-election in southern Britain delivered a blow on Friday to Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives, which was pushed into third place by the euro-sceptic UK Independence Party (UKIP).

The Conservatives' junior coalition partner the Liberal Democrats retained their seat in Eastleigh with 32% of the vote, but both parties lost a large slice of their support to UKIP.

The result, described by Cameron as "disappointing", will raise renewed questions about his leadership.

He recently promised an in-out referendum on EU membership in a bid to quieten the anti-EU wing of his party and win back voters tempted to vote for UKIP.

UKIP, which advocates British withdrawal from the EU, won 27% of the vote, an increase of 24% from the last by-election in 2010.

It was the best-ever result for the party in a vote for the Parliament in Westminster.

It has 11 of Britain's 73 members of the European Parliament in Brussels.

The Conservatives won 25%, down almost 14%, while the Lib Dems share of the vote was also eroded by 14%.

Read more on:    eu  |  david cameron

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