Thursday 21 September 2017

8 big names who lost their seats in the General Election

Former deputy prime minister and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg was among those who lost their seats.

By Alistair Mason

The General Election saw shock upheavals that nobody could’ve predicted after the Scottish National Party, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats faced unexpected losses in Parliament.

Here are eight big names who lost their seats after Britons cast their votes in the General Election 2017.

1. Nick Clegg

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The former deputy prime minister and Liberal Democrat leader lost his Sheffield Hallam seat to Labour rival Jared O’Mara who took the victory with over 2,000 votes on Clegg.

O’Mara accumulated 21,881 votes to Clegg’s 19,756, who said it was “the greatest privilege of my political life” to represent Sheffield Hallam for the last 12 years.

Clegg became the leader of the Lib Dems in 2007 and led the party into government in a coalition deal with David Cameron’s Conservatives in 2010.

His party helped secure increases in the personal tax allowance and providing free school meals, but they abandoned promises to oppose tuition fee increases, which almost trebled.

After the Lib Dems suffered heavy losses in the 2015 general election – with seats dwindling from 57 to eight – people wondered whether Clegg would take a step back from politics and his Sheffield Hallam seat. But he was appointed Brexit spokesman for the Lib Dems in 2016, which saw him play a prominent role in the current general election.

2. Angus Robertson

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The deputy leader of the SNP was ousted from his Moray seat – which he’s held since 2001 – to the Conservatives’ Douglas Ross by 18,478 votes to 22,637.

Roberston said after the defeat: “I’m confident the SNP is going to win the General Election in Scotland and I wish my colleagues all the best.”

Robertson became one of the SNP’s most high-profile figures thanks to a weekly platform at Prime Minister’s Questions, which he was often praised for. He earned a reputation as a formidable opponent and potential future leadership contender.

He was elected into Westminster 16 years ago to represent Moray, and was the SNP’s campaigns director for the 2007 and 2011 Scottish elections.

He also served as the party’s defence spokesman and, in 2015, was appointed as a member of the Privy Council and the parliamentary Intelligence and Security Committee, before becoming a party deputy leader in 2016.

3. Alex Salmond

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Salmond’s defeat in Gordon delivered yet another blow to the SNP after he was beaten by the Conservatives’ Colin Clark. The former party leader had swept to power in the seat with a 8,687 majority in 2015, overturning decades of Liberal Democrat rule.

In his speech, Salmond said: “The SNP has lost a number of fine parliamentarians this evening, that is a grievous blow for us.

“But overall results show the SNP will win a majority of the seats in this country and a majority of the votes.”

4. Sarah Olney

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Olney lost her Richmond Park seat of just six months to the Conservatives’ Zac Goldsmith by just 45 votes.

Goldsmith had held the seat since the 2010 general election before resigning as a Tory MP in October over his objection to an expansion at Heathrow Airport, triggering a by-election.

He then ran for the seat as an independent candidate instead of a Conservative against Olney, but she was elected MP in December, receiving 20,510 votes to Goldsmith’s 18,638. She was was the only female Liberal Democrat MP in the 2015-2017 parliament.

Goldsmith had promised not to stand as a Conservative candidate if they continued to back the third runway at Heathrow, yet rejoined the party and won back the Richmond Park seat as a Tory.

5. Ben Gummer

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One of the co-authors of the Tory manifesto, his Ipswich seat was won by Labour by a 5% swing.

Gummer was elected as MP for Ipswich in 2010, taking the seat from Labour, and increased his majority to 3,733 in 2015.

The cabinet office minister played a key role in the team responsible for the manifesto and had been tipped for promotion if the Prime Minister returned to Number 10, but lost out on the opportunity thanks to 831 votes.

6. Jane Ellison

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The Tories’ junior minister lost her Battersea seat on a 10% swing to Labour’s Marsha De Cordova, who took 25,292 votes to Ellison’s 22,876.

The defeat marks the end of Ellison’s seven-year parliamentary career, which saw her swiftly rise up the ranks since her election to Parliament in 2010 after she won the south-west London seat from Labour.

Cameron appointed her public health minister in 2013, a role which she continued in until June 2016 until she moved to the Treasury in the role of financial secretary in May’s government.

7. Gavin Barwell

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The Conservatives’ housing minister lost his marginal Croydon Central seat to Labour’s Sarah Jones by more than 5,000 votes.

Barwell – who penned a book entitled How to Win a Marginal Seat: My Year Fighting For My Political Life – had beaten Jones to the seat by 165 votes in the 2015 election.

8. John Nicolson

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The SNP’s Nicolson suffered a defeat in East Dunbartonshire where the former government minister, Jo Swinson, won back the seat she had lost to him in 2015 general election.

Nicolson secured 15,684 votes to Swinson’s 21,023. She had held the seat for a decade before Nicolson took it over.

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