Green Party victory start of 'historic new political force'

Caroline Lucas

Caroline Lucas has been an MEP since 1999 campaigning on issues including climate change

Newly elected MP Caroline Lucas said her party was now ready to 'take its rightful place in Parliament' after her landmark victory in yesterday's general election

Green Party leader Caroline Lucas has become the first ever Green to be elected into Parliament after winning the seat of Brighton Pavilion.

A close race saw the Green Party gain 31.3 per cent of the vote and beat Labour and the Conservatives into second and third places respectively.

The party did not come close to winning any other seats although its deputy leader Adrian Ramsay did gain an 8 per cent rise in support for the party in Norwich South, eventually won by the Liberal Democrats. Former Friends of the Earth director Tony Juniper gained around 8 per cent of the vote in the Cambridge constituency.

Although the Green Party has two MEPs, including Lucas, as well as more than 100 councillors across the UK, they have never previously won their own parliamentary seat. They did win 8.7 per cent of the vote in last year's European elections.

Long-time campaigner

Lucas joined the Green Party in 1986 and has been an MEP since June 1999, representing the South East of England. She was elected party leader in 2008.

As a member of the European Parliament she has campaigned strongly on food and farming issues, opposing GM crops, the dominance of the supply chain by big supermarkets and supporting measures to toughen up rules on pesticide use.

She has also fought numerous campaigns on illegal logging, mobile phone masts and continues to push for Europe to take a stronger lead in reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).

Speaking after her victory she said green principles and policies would now have a voice in Parliament.

'Policies such as responding to climate change with a million new "green" jobs in low-carbon industries, fair pensions and care for older people, and stronger regulation of the banks will be heard in the House of Commons,' she said.

Lucas said she also strongly backs calls for a referendum to replace the first-past-the-post voting system with a form of proportional representation.

Useful links
Full list of results for Green Party

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