New Hartlepool Brexit Party MEP: ‘Result shows voters want to leave EU’

Hartlepool’s new Brexit Party MEP says their success is a clear sign that voters in the town want to leave the EU and the party will push to be part of the UK’s negotiating team.

By Mark Payne
Monday, 27 May, 2019, 17:03
John Tennant (right) with Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage and the party's other North East MEP Brian Monteith at a rally on Wearside earlier this month.

John Tennant won one of the Brexit Party’s two North East seats in Sunday night’s European election count.

He said the party’s success is a clear sign that voters want Britain to leave the European Union and feel let down by Labour and the Conservative’s handling of the situation resulting in heavy losses nationally.

John Tennant

The overall results for the North East were Change UK 24,968, Conservative 42,395, Green Party 49,905, Labour 119,931, Liberal Democrats 104,330, The Brexit Party 240,056, UKIP 38,269.

Mr Tennant was the one of three MEPs elected to represent the region in Brussels and Strasbourg along with fellow Brexit Party candidate Brian Monteith and Labour’s sitting MEP Jude Kirton-Darling.

Mr Tennant, who is also an Independent Union councillor on Hartlepool Borough Council for Jesmond ward, told the Mail: “It’s an honour but these elections shouldn’t have happened. We should have left [the EU] on March 29 with or without a deal.

“We have remained clear throughout the campaign that we believe the only Brexit where leave means leave is to leave on WTO (World Trade Organisation) terms.

“We are appalled that Parliament took no deal off the table which weakens our negotiating position.

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“What we are seeking to do now is get onto the negotiating team. We believe we have a mandate for that now and that is what we will be pressing for.”

However, Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council has said the EU will not renegotiate on Theresa May’s proposed withdrawal agreement which has failed to win a consensus in Parliament. 

Mr Tennant said: “I think the clear message to the Labour Party and the Conservatives is their handling and their position on Brexit, not only is it confusing they haven’t made it clear to the electorate where they stand on it.

“The electorate have made it clear they don’t trust them. People voted for the Brexit Party in their droves which I’m very pleased to see.”

He added: “If you look at the results for the region the Brexit Party got more than double the Labour vote. It was a very bad night for Labour.

“The clear indication is that the North East wants Britain to leave and we should get on with the job. Parliament is going to have to listen.”