In the UK, MEPs are elected by region. I live in the West Midlands region, which comprises Birmingham, the Black Country, Coventry, Solihull, Warwickshire, Staffordshire, Shropshire, Worcestershire, and Herefordshire. Whilst I’m not going to do a post on all the regions, I thought I’d say a little bit about mine.
At the last elections, we elected 2 Conservative MEPs, 2 UKIP ones, 1 Labour, and 1 Liberal Democrat. Since then, we have gained one more Conservative (the Lisbon treaty gave us an extra seat, and it was given to the party that would have gained the seventh seat at the election), and both UKIP MEPs have left to form their own parties.
Who’s on the ballot
- An Independence from Europe
- British National Party
- Conservative Party
- English Democrats
- Green Party
- Harmony Party
- Labour Party
- Liberal Democrats
- We Demand a Referendum
A quick rundown of the less-well-known parties:
An Independence from Europe are the UKIP splinter group formed by MEP Mike Nattrass after he was deselected. The split was not over policy issues.
English Democrats are mostly after an English Parliament. They are definitely right-wing (probably somewhere between UKIP and the BNP).
Harmony Party are newly formed, and appear to be another right wing anti-EU party.
No2EU are a far left group who want out of the EU. Their lead candidate is Dave Nellist, a former Labour MP who was expelled for being part of Militant (a Marxist group within the Labour Party).
We Demand a Referendum is a UKIP splinter group led by Nikki Sinclaire MEP, who left UKIP because of the kind of right-wing parties they associated with in the European Parliament.
None of these minor parties have any realistic chance of getting a seat, though We Demand a Referendum might do reasonably well in some parts of the region.
As for where my vote will be going, here’s a short video from the lead candidate of my party about issues specific to this region.